After the shock that was experienced in the Monumental by the death of the fan Pablo Marcelo Serrano, and beyond the impact and pain generated, the team of Martín Demichelis has to put its head in an important duel for the Copa Libertadores. This Wednesday will receive Fluminense from 21, in a decisive clash for the future of the set of Núñez in the maximum continental tournament.
Logically, the players still struggle to process what happened to the deceased fan: Pablo Serrano, 53. Although Demichelis immediately focused on chatting with the group and working with the emotions of the players to try to have as little impact as possible on the team's preparation to play against Flu.
The city police and the perimeter where the fan fell. Photo: AFP
River will play an early final. By remaining in last place in Group D, after four games played, the margin of error narrowed. And the scenarios are diverse. If he wins, he will gain momentum and continue to rely on himself to qualify; and if he draws or loses, he must hope that The Strongest does not beat Sporting Cristal because if that happens, he will be eliminated.
The squad trained on Sunday and Monday at the RiverCamp in Ezeiza and there were positive football developments for Demichelis. It is that the defenders Paulo Díaz and Emanuel Mammana returned to work alongside the group and may be available to the coach against the Flu.
Moreover, if the Chilean is seen well, he could be a starter instead of Robert Rojas. What is certain is that against the carioca team Milton Casco will return to the left side (on Saturday he was preserved by load management) and Andrés Herrera will continue in the right sector.
Meanwhile, in the middle, with Enzo Pérez (still with differentiated works by the synovitis in the right knee) of low by suspension since he reached the three yellows in the Libertadores, the fixed is that Demichelis repeats the duo Aliendro-De la Cruz in the central axis, with the return of Nacho Fernández as an attacking midfielder, along with Esequiel Barco and, perhaps, Santiago Solari. And Lucas Beltran would be the only tip.
For its part, Fluminense, with the Argentine Germán Cano as a starter, comes from cutting a streak of five games without victories (four defeats and a draw, with the elimination included of the Brazilian Cup, where it was left out after falling with its classic rival, Flamengo) by beating Bragantino by 2 to 1 in the Brasileirao.
Cano lives an incredible present. He scored 3 goals against River in the first leg. Photo: EFE/Andre Coelho
"We came into the game against River very well. And it's going to be a very decisive match. I would love to be able to score a goal on the field of River, it would be a great dream to do it, "said the Argentine Cano, who already converted to the club of Núñez (he scored three goals) in the match at the Maracanã, in which Fluminense thrashed by 5 to 1.
Franco Petroli, on loan
The goalkeeper Franco Petroli will go on loan, without charge or purchase option, to Estudiantes de Río Cuarto, a Cordovan team that plays in the First National. The idea is to shoot the 24-year-old goalkeeper, who had been River's third goalkeeper, behind Franco Armani and Ezequiel Centurión.
The intention is that Petroli, who is a member of the youth teams since the U-15, adds experience as happened with Centurión when he was loaned to Estudiantes de Buenos Aires and then returned. Meanwhile, Lucas Lavagnino, goalkeeper of the Argentine U-20, will remain as the third goalkeeper of Martin Demichelis' squad.