Wednesday, April 7, 2010

River se va la B?

In Argentina, soccer teams are relegated based on the average of the last 3 years, which is six seasons. Of the 20 teams in the first division, two are relegated to the second division. 17th and 18th place play 'la promoción' against the 4th and 3rd teams from the second division. Those playoffs are a two game home and home series on aggregate goals. If there is a tie, then the team that was in the first division stays in the first division.

River is in danger of being relegated in May 2011. Here is the listing:

Clausura 2010 12 points in 13 games (17.5)
Apertura 2009 21 points
Clausura 2009 27 points
Apertura 2008 14 points
Clausura 2008 43 points
Apertura 2007 23 points

In 108 games, they have 140 points. That comes out to an average 1.296 points per game. That means they are safe from relegation at the end of this season (through a historical quirk, the closing of the season is in May). That leaves them tied with Huracan for 14th, which is pretty safe. Even if they get zero points for the rest of the year (if they continue at their current pace, they will get 17.5 points), that means they would still be at 1.22 this year which would avoid even the relegation playoffs unless all the bottom clubs suddenly win a bunch of games.

However, in May 2011 they lose the points from Clausura 2008 (when they were champions) and Apertura 2007. Excluding those points right now means that River has 74 points in 70 games, or 1.057 points per game. Right now, that puts them in 18th place, but just barely above Chacarita and Atletico Tucuman, who will be relegated. So, in other words, if River continues at the pace of the last two years over the next two years, they will almost definitely be relegated.

That's crazy. The funny thing is that while your average Boca fan would love it, you have to wonder if Boca management feels the same way: the Superclasico is big business.

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