"Super Cup? Football?". The young man dependent on a small mobile phone store of Riad The matter sounded on Chinese. Maybe he was not a fan of football, that he can also be. But neither did they know much more a couple of taxi drivers, grabbed to limited English, who went into full speed by the asphalt of the Saudi capital. Beyond the pennants with the shields of the four teams (including the Atlético classic) that contributed something of atmosphere at the reception of the Vittori Palace hotel, where the press is housed, there were barely there were signs of the supercopa of Spain. At least, in that corner of an absorbing city where more than seven million people live.
And yet, on Monday, in less than an hour, the 30,000 tickets available for the first classic in Saudi Arabia were exhausted. Two years after the failed attempt of 2020, where Athletic made barcelona derail and, hours later, Ernesto Valverde in semifinals. The prices ranged between nine (38 Saudi rials) and 590 euros (2,500), for those fans who bet on a VIP night at King Fahd stadium, raised in 1987, when no one imagined that it would be the scene of a Spanish tournament. Nor would he end up watching women inside his walls, because this is how it is established to occur throughout the week. Normality in a large part of the planet is not in Riad.
Everyone who wants to attend the classic, yes, he must do it with a negative PCR ahead. Restrictions by the pandemic have reduced their capacity to 50%, above 60,000 spectators under normal circumstances. Both Real Madrid and Barcelona, also Athletic and Athletic, also have a small quota of passes for their commitments. There the three parties of this second supercopa will be played thousands of kilometers from Spain.
But the image of Saudi Arabia, under the magnifying glass for the recurrent violation of human rights, usually twists the gesture of the planet. Money can not bury many of the injustices that occur there. From Amnesty International denounce the situation that women and people live LGTBI, still far from having rights similar to those of man. Homosexuality is punished with jail sorrows and adultery carries even flagellation sentences. Little (or nothing) has varied the panorama since the first episode of the Supercopa, in 2020. Amnesty has requested a gesture to the four participating clubs: look a violet bracelet not only during the party, but in any public appearance during the week that The tournament lasts. In the RFEF they claim to know the request only by the press and in Atlético do not have news of receiving any claiming distinctive.
"The creation of an entirely feminine competition was one of the points of the agreement to come to Arabia and has been fulfilled," enhances from the Spanish Federation, where they add that since the agreement has been based on coach and referees of the country. That was one of the important parts of the treatment signed in 2019 and now extended to continue with the tournament under the same decorated for a decade.
Among the protagonists, there is a voice that has roar against: Raúl García. «For me it does not make sense. It is a championship that is played in our country and going to another country does not make sense. We have forgotten the basics and do not think about the amateur ", lamented the Athletic footballer, who will face his former athletic companions tomorrow. A few more than a year ago he raised the trophy on the lawn of the Cartuja. He did it there by the pandemic.
The show will resume tonight (20.00 Spanish time) at the King Fahd Stadium of Riad, the most populated city in Arabia. With that classic longing in the desert. With a handful of criticism that millions can not cushion.Updated Date: 11 January 2022, 21:39