Rufete, Moreno, Mao and Chen: Sword of Damocles

Mao, Chen y Rufete, Espanyol.


“We come from two years with a difficult environment, and We know that everything that is not winning a game has consequences.“. The phrase, realistic and revealing, was pronounced Vincent Moreno this past Thursday after defeat against Rayo Vallecano (0-1), minutes after the stands sang in unison the “Rufete, go now“, and seconds before apologizing for the bad game and admitting that “it’s a shame, but it is like that, and our obligation is to collaborate with that stability winning games.”

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LaLiga Santander

*Data updated as of April 22, 2022

It seems to assume the Espanyol coach – who already had shown signs of exhaustion a day earlier by marking distances with a future in which he has a contract in force– that the club’s project, or at least its popularity among the social masses, hangs on such a fine thread that the team that suffers a defeat is shaken at the RCDE Stadium, even before just 11,873 spectators. It is possible that the exceptional season at home – with 31 points out of the 39 in their possession in the standings – is not valued, but it is also very likely that these good numbers have served as a lifesaver for a roadmap with which the fans share less and less. The proof is that Wu Lei’s goal against Celta he did not eliminate the plebiscite against the sports director, to a lesser extent against the board, he simply postponed it to the next meeting in Cornellà.

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That continuous examination in the last two seasons, that damocles sword Moreno pointed out, is not so much aimed at his management –which may be liked more or less, provoke a healthy stylistic debate or about players used, but he has fulfilled the objective in both cases and ahead of time– as it is at the backpack that the club and its supporters were carrying when the coach landed. He managed to get the footballers to unload from their shoulders the unbearable weight of declinebut no one in other instances of the entity managed to that original sin, that slab of the worst campaign in history, fell into oblivion, at least it was forgiven.

Mao Ye Wu, current CEO of Espanyol, on the RCDE Stadium box this Thursday.

And that is where emerges, at the slightest setback, the figure of Francisco Joaquin Perez Rufete. Neither him ascentneither him eventual success in signings –For example, when it came to persuading Raúl de Tomás, no matter how much 20 million were paid, since Sevilla was also prowling him– they compensate for the bulk of fans the blush of two years ago. Fair or not, the current dilemma, in which contract ends but Chen Yansheng can offer him the renewalfurther polarizes phobias.

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The President’s Onion Layers

Another thing is whatever Rufete decides, arrived at the case. EITHER what Chen finally determineslittle lover of changes until he suddenly surprises with a swerve, as he has already shown on many occasions with the up to three CEOs dismissed, the last José María Durán weeks ago to give power to Mao Ye Wuwho this Saturday he will speak at the club’s ‘stand’ for Sant Jordi, with the sole mission of dispelling doubts about the future. A change of script, his promotion, which from some sector was interpreted as a victory for the sports director, and which in reality discover several layers of the onion that insulated the president from any criticism.

Because wear and tear exists even for those who have invested more than 200 million in Spanish. Especially when, over time and in the case of a football club and not a typical factory, andSanitation is taken for granted and money is expected toas it is commonly said, go to the field. A step that Chen has not yet taken, and that is not in sight in the short or medium term either. Although in reality, very little is known about the intentions of the Chinese tycoon. Another cause of erosion, of uprooting, of a loss of connection and identity that, beyond the results, is what gives meaning to this feeling called football.

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