Posted January 30, 2014

Racing Santander players walk off in Copa del Rey in protest of own club’s board

Spain
Racing Santander

Racing Santander players made quite the statement in the Copa del Rey on Thursday. (Pedro Puente Hoyos/EPA)

Racing Santander players and coaches had not been paid in months. Instead of continuing to play on under a cloud of uncertainty, they took matters into their own hands.

Backing up its threat to not play unless the club’s president and board resigned, Racing refused to play its Copa del Rey second leg (the home leg, no less) against Real Sociedad Thursday, throwing away a chance to reach the semifinals of the competition for the opportunity to make a grander statement.

The club, which employed Carlos Bocanegra on loan from Rangers last year before the former U.S. national team captain linked up with Chivas USA, has plummeted to Spain’s third division, yet had a chance to reach the semifinals against Barcelona if it could overturn a 3-1 deficit.

Instead, upon the opening kick, Racing players lined along the center circle arm-in-arm, while players and coaches on the bench did the same as Sociedad players kicked the ball around their own half. Racing’s goalkeeper conferred with the referee, who blew play dead, drawing a raucous roar of approval from the home fans. Real Sociedad will have the place in the semifinals. For Racing, there is a different set of priorities.

Watch the incredible moment of club unity below:

6 comments
SHOGUN
SHOGUN

think the ref gets paid for the game still? looked pretty content

LawsonReid
LawsonReid

la liga is such a joke league,the whole thing should be scrapped

Matthew W
Matthew W

I remember a case regarding another club not paying their players for months and there was discussion on after X number days that the players would be considered free agents to sign with any club and there would be no compensation to their previous club.

Jim P
Jim P

My maternal grandparents are from Santander and immigrated to this country in 1919. They were fiercely independent and prideful people who like many immigrants succeeded in America.

Viva,  Espana y Viva Santander.

therednorth1
therednorth1

Incredible scene there.  It's incredible that a team that was in one of the top soccer leagues in the world just two years ago can get away with not paying their players for months.  To have gotten that far in that competition, and be willing to throw that chance away to make a statement is a big deal, but at the same time not getting paid for months is a big deal too.


Respect for the Santander player for backing up their threat, and for standing up for themselves.

MrGameandShow
MrGameandShow

@therednorth1 They will be going into administration and force the fans to buy a stake in the team...pretty sad.