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Posts Tagged ‘counsellors’

nobre pesca.
This coming Saturday, the little more than 10.000 members of Palmeiras’ social club will elect a president for the upcoming two years. For the first time, voting for president is not an exclusive right of the consiglieri, Palmeiras slowly taking steps toward greater democracy. That being said: any presidential candidate had to receive a minimum 15% of votes in a pre-election decided by said counsellors to be allowed to run, and only two candidates made the cut – sitting president Paulo Nobre and the opposition candidate Wlademir Pescarmona, the latter tied to the União Verde e Branca political group including former president Belluzzo.

Anything Palmeiras presented both candidates with three questions ahead of the upcoming elections. Regrettably, only Pescarmona chose to reply. Below, the short “interview”.

Anything Palmeiras: If elected, which three important changes at Palmeiras are to be expected during your 2015-2017 mandate?

Wlademir Pescarmona: 1) the recruitment of an executive for the football department, a professional who is updated and currently employed in a relevant position. 2) the creation of a support group to the presidency, with the mission to seek out new partnerships. 3) improved relations with WTorre and other partners.

AP: Which three policies/practices will be maintained at whatever cost?

WP: 1) not spend more than is being raised. 2) not anticipate revenues beyond the time of your mandate. 3) nurture the relationship with partners, using the support group, to build and maintain a strong and competitive football team.

AP: During your mandate, what will Palmeiras do to increase visibility internationally?

WP: use the influence of businessmen and designate “ambassadors”, in particular targeting the North American market. 

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tempo-ruim.
Force Majeure made me miss out on watching what several describe as Palmeiras’ worst performance so far this year. Not a tremendous surprise, that is: after four straight victories, the backlash was rather expected, and what better backdrop than an away game against the bottom team of Chapecoense? Palmeiras lost 2-0, Fábio being the sole reason the score wasn’t stretched further. Gareca, in case you had any doubts: there’s work work work to be done. And players to be signed.

Yesterday morning the squad was supposed to take off for São Paulo, but another Force Majeure came into play as heavy fog rolled in and shut down the airport for 24 hours. Already yesterday, Palmeiras contacted CBF with a request for transfer of Wednesday’s game against Botafogo, claiming there was insufficient time for preparations. Request denied. The squad got on a plane this morning, disembarked in Campinas, then continuing the remaining 500+ kilometres by bus (why, I don’t know: there are flights available Campinas-Presidente Prudente). Don’t expected players in the best of physical shape against Botafogo. If they’ll be motivated? Tomorrow, 19:30 (GMT -3) we’ll find out.

— ooo —

Bruno, the keeper, has asked for a transfer. Unable to regains the confidence of coaches and supporters alike, he feels the only way for him to redeem himself is getting plenty of live action defending another team until the end of the year. Seems the best of solutions for everyone involved. As I’ve stated before: Bruno is a respectable and hard-working professional, on top of a passionate palmeirense. It’s a shame he’s not the brilliant keeper we all would like him to be, but such is life. It’s time to flip the page.

— ooo —

Speaking of change: while the modifications to Palmeiras’ statutes are slowly [sic] cooking, the club’s Deliberative Council (DC) yesterday night voted in three new vitalícios, i.e. members for life. One of the new persons to perpetually integrate the deliberative body is Osório Furlan Júnior, owner of 36% of Valdivia’s economic rights. How that’s even allowed is beyond me. Talk about conflict of interests. The cancer within Palmeiras is alive and well, thank you very much.

And still… Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

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Today, we’re shooting rapids. Ready?

Palmeiras keeper Deola, on loan to Vitória, is not renewing his contract with the Bahia club; his 2014 whereabouts are unclear but there’s no indication he’ll play for the Verdão coming season.

Fernandinho’s heading back to Oeste, who in turn are returning Diego Souza to Palmeiras. Other likely returns include Patrick Vieira and Mazinho.

Former first, then second keeper Bruno is likely to leave, destination unknown.  So is right-winger Luis Felipe, destined for Benfica unless anything goes wrong in the last minute.

Palmeiras have entered the transfer market in high gear, although little of it is out in the press and nothing’s been formally announced; speculations include midfielder Elano (Grêmio), also midfielder Lucas Lima (Sport/Inter), right-winger Jorge Moreira (Libertad/PAR), also right-winger Stefan Medina (Atlético Nacional/COL), left-winger Uendel (Ponte Preta) and forward Rafael Sóbis (Fluminense). Negotiations seemingly most advanced is with attacking midfielder Bruno César (Al Ahli/SA).

As you will notice, several of the speculations involve foreigners: the CBF are likely to announce a modification to current regulations, raising the allowed number of foreign players on the pitch from three to five.  

Palmeiras are in contact with investment groups and companies in search of partners for signing players.

[Regarding the transfer market, am I optimistic? I want to be, but must admit that the unchanged situation regarding Palmeiras’ master sponsorship and the dragged out procedure that led up to the renovation of Kleina left me worried. Good names must put pen to paper as of next week, when the Brasileirão ends.]

Today Friday, a new round of negotiations takes place between Palmeiras and WTorre aimed at a friendly solution solving the dispute regarding number of seats destined to each of the parties for commercialisation at the Allianz Parque. If bad comes to worse, the case proceeds to the Getúlio Vargas Foundation’s Board of Conciliation and Arbitration.

This week, Palmeiras initiated construction on the new training facilities, partially to stand ready in mid 2014. By early 2015, the facilities will also include a “hotel”, where players and staff will gather before home games. Roughly 80% of the construction costs are paid for by the “Fundo Brahmeiro” (refresh your memory here).

Busto_São_MarcoMarcos recently approved the cast for the bust that will be featured at the Allianz Parque together with the current other three (Junqueira, Waldemar Fiúme and Ademir da Guia). Oberdan Cattani will join the quartet in the close future. By the look of it, we’ll indeed have a very life-like copy on display.

On Tuesday, six consiglieri were elected into Palmeiras’ Deliberative Council – for life. Each and every one of perpetual counsellors represent a step back in terms of modernisation of the club’s archaic and faulty political/administrative structure. Hopefully, this was a last thrust by the regressive forces before the statuary changes due in 2014.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

 

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Yesterday night, Palmeiras’ Deliberative Council formally welcomed the 76 new council members elected at the beginning of February. With their mandates running until early 2017, the new batch joins the 76 conseglieri who are half-way through their four-year mandate, in addition to the roughly 130 members appointed for life.

The highlight of the evening consisted of the elections of president and vice-president of the Council, the outcome being of the outmost importance: the president of the CD has the power to advance or – as we saw during most part of former president Vergamini’s time in office – block important issues, including the statuary changes proposed by Palmeiras’ president Nobre during his election campaign.

As it happens, Nobre’s candidate of choice won the elections by a rather comfortable margin:  lawyer Antônio Augusto Pompeu de Toledo received 137 votes, with young and coming Tarso Gouveia landing as the runner up with 76 votes while Eugenio Reynaldo Palazzi trailed behind with 20. The vice-president race was a bit tighter, with Elio Esteves coming in at 116, Guilherme Gomes Pereira at 87 and Vittorio Alessandro Pescolido at 40.

According to a Brazilian saying, President Nobre finds himself with “the knife and cheese in his hands”, the political landscape by all means seaming favourable to his intentions to promote the profound changes envisioned by progressive forces: separate the social club from all football activities, making them two distinct and self-sustaining units; gradually diminish the political influence of the for-life-appointed counsellors; and have supporters participate more actively and in larger numbers in the political life of Palmeiras, turning the elections more transparent and democratic.

Some see a diabolic scheme lurking in the shadows, orchestrated by former president Mustafá Contursi, who de facto voted in favour of both Nobre and de Toledo. “Contursi has won, Contursi is back!” That sounds, quite frankly, rather insane. In my view, Contursi sided with Nobre – who politically represents everything Contursi is not – because there were simply no other options. By “siding” with the winner, the ego boost is there, albeit small. Insignificant. As I’m certain time will show.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

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charles+oliveiraAfter two weeks of getting familiarised with the grim reality, Nobre and Co. are starting to take affirmative action also “where it counts”, as certainly a majority of supporters would feel: by strengthening the squad. With few options on the market, the swapping of Luan for two players from Cruzeiro is good news: defensive midfielders Charles (#28) and Marcelo Oliveira (#26) might not be stars, but neither is Luan, whos relation to Palmeiras’ supporters in addition had turned unsustainable. Both team are thus embarking on an experiment, with nothing to lose, as all contracts are based on loans until the end of the year. We are likely to see Marcelo Oliveira debuting already tomorrow against Atlético Sorocaba.

RonnyA third player – Ronieri “Ronny” da Silva Pinto, here pictured in the forefront – has been training with the squad for a week in the absence of a document from Europe, clearing him for play at Palmeiras. The playmaker was with Figueirense last season but in fact belongs to Estonian club FC Olimpi. Today, the document arrived, authorising the 21-year-old from Cuiabá to sign a contract for the remainder of 2013. Ronny is the bench option for Valdivia, but might actually be given a lot of play time considering the Chilean’s uncanny ability to get injured. Valdivia IS in fact injured: a muscular problem was detected after last Sunday’s 3-3 draw against XV de Piracicaba, taking him off the pitch for roughly two weeks (thus most likely removing him from Palmeiras’ first game in this year’s edition of the Copa Libertadores, against Peruvian Sporting Cristal).

KleberIn addition to the above, all seems ready for the announcement of Kleber. The 22-year-old Porto striker today passed medical exams and should tomorrow sign a one-year contract with the Verdão. A player of calibre, he should within a week or two stand ready to claim his spot in the staring eleven alongside Barcos.

Brunoro has clearly been a busy bee. Considering the limited options and the negative cash flow situation, he’s indeed doing very well so far. The expectation is for him to pull out another card or two from his sleeve before the first deadline to enter players for the Libertadores Cup.

 — ooo —

Academia_StoreTomorrow, the new line of official Palmeiras stores – the Academia Store – open up their doors for the public. The joint Palmeiras/Meltex venture – initially on a sex-year contract – foresees a total of 100 stores throughout Brazil, the first one placed on Augusta Street in São Paulo. Yesterday, an inauguration cocktail was held in the 250 square meter establishment in the presence of many Palmeiras dignitaries, including president Nobre and São Marcos. The store looks mighty fine if you ask me.

— ooo —

Last but not least, renovation also in the Deliberative Council as Palmeiras’ members last Saturday voted in 76 new conseglieri for a four-year term. The DC consists of 300 counsellors: 148 appointed for life and another 152 elected, of which half are swapped every two years. Slowly but surely, new blood is entering Palmeiras.

A few days back the DC gathered and decided unanimously to propose a 15% filter on presidential candidates as of 2014. The proposal will be brought to the vote in an extraordinary General Assembly, date to be confirmed, and is considered approved if receiving 50% +1 of the total number of votes.

One important decision still lurks in the near future: the election of the new chairman/president of the Deliberative Council, to be held in March. With powers to accelerate or seriously cripple (vide Vergamini) the urgent statuary changes envisioned by Nobre and the progressive forces within Palmeiras, succeeding in placing the “right man” in front of the DC is crucial. Stay tuned for further developments.

Scoppia che la vittoria è nostra!

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Last Monday Palmeiras’ Deliberative Council (DC) continued the interrupted meeting of 1 October, voting on the amendments of the Direct Vote proposal to be implemented as of the 2014 elections. The whole thing went fairly smooth, but not entirely to the taste of this blogger and other progressive forces wanting to see more dramatic change to Palmeiras. The always excellent Luciano Pasqualini, Executive Director of the Fanfulla political movement, posted a good summary containing the main points of the approved proposal: below you find bits and pieces translated – thanks to the valuable contribution from Eduardo Toledo – with a few additional comments from yours truly.
.

What has been approved by a majority of the DC

1) Instead of eight years, the presidential candidates will only need four years of experience as counsellor. <Good change>

2) Presidential candidates must form a platform, consisting of a president and four vice-presidents. Today candidates run individually, meaning we sometimes end up with vice-presidents that have a different political platform than the president. <Good change>

3) Platforms are registered and subjected to pre-approval by the DC before deemed valid to run in the elections. At Monday’s session a majority of the DC (84 vs. 64 votes) opted for a 20 per cent filter, meaning that any platform must receive 20 per cent of the votes of the DC or 50 votes, whichever number is greater. <This is where it gets tricky. Some sort of filter is in my view justified in order to avoid having an exaggerated number of platforms or brake very populist/manipulative moves, but a 20 per cent filter is too high, especially considering that almost half of the DC’s members are appointed for life (have not been elected by the Club’s Associates). The filter should be made low enough to allow for new oxygen, giving the Associates freedom of choice between a multitude of platforms running in the elections. 10 or 15 per cent would both be better options. As now stands, a maximum of five different platforms could run in the election (provided at least 250 out of almost 300 counsellors of the DC are present and cast their votes, and that each platform receives exactly 20 per cent of the votes – a highly unlikely scenario). An obvious risk with the high filter is that only “traditional” political profiles – those that already count on support from large parts of the DC due to a number of reasons, many of which would not look good in daylight – would pass in the DC and qualify for running in the elections. Meaning we’d be facing a stalemate.>

4) The Audit Committee (COF) will also be elected by the Associates. <Good change>

5) The General Assembly (including Direct Elections) will take place in the second half of November (today it takes place in January), and the new Management takes office on December 15 or 5 days after the last official match of the year. <Good change>

In addition to the above a few other changes were approved, such as a requirement for presidential candidates to formally submit a “Plan of Government”. It was also approved that the sitting President must, at the end of his term, conduct a coordinated transition to the newly elected Management. <All good changes>

— ooo —

Even considering the filter, the approval is a gigantic step toward democratisation at Palmeiras. With the new order, the Associates will in the end elect the Management which will naturally have to broaden their attention from roughly 100 counsellors of the DC (traditionally sufficient to guarantee your re-election) to the more than 10.000 current Associates. This will in turn expand the political involvement of many of the Associates.

What are the next steps? Well, the President of the DC will make the call for a General Assembly (GA): according to the statuary deadline, elections should happen either by the end of December, or, more likely, by January. The President should release the date later this week.

At the GA, Associates will vote on the Direct Vote proposal. It is unclear how this will happen, the crucial point being if the project will be presented before the GA as a package or as the original proposal with several amendments, each voted separately. The second option is what we must fight for: the good bits approved by the DC would need a simple majority by the GA in order to be ratified; a modification to the filter amendment would require a 2/3 majority. The latter is more difficult, but not at all impossible.

Avanti Palestra!

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Yesterday night Palmeiras’ Deliberative Council unanimously voted in favour of the proposal to adopt the Direct Vote for president. Unanimously.

Anyone believing it was an easy victory is utterly mistaken. It was the labour of many men and women, the pressure, the commitment to changing Palmeiras that paved the way and built up a momentum so strong that not even the fiercest opponent of the Direct Vote dared go against the tide.

It could have gone wrong. A large number of conseglieri could have stayed absent, not allowing for any voting to take place (in the end we had 191 counsellors present:  the minimum needed was 143). The Council could have opted for a secret ballot, turning the result unpredictable. A spark could have turned the 700 strong and peaceful manifestation outside the building into something different, giving former president Mustafá and his allies an excuse for requesting the postponing of the reunion. The proposal could have been rejected fair and square.

None of this happened. The Direct Vote is now a reality at S.E. Palmeiras, needing only a formal approval by simple majority at the upcoming General Assembly (piece of cake).

The victory is both gigantic and partial. Gigantic because it propels Palmeiras into the 21st century. Partial, because the war is by no means over. In fact, not even the first battle is: no voting took place on the seven amendments to the original Direct Vote project – amendments that will define the length of the presidential mandate; when the first elections under the new rules should take place (2013? 2014? 2015?); what prerequisites a candidate must fulfil; and so on.

The amendments come in all colours and are full of traps. It’s clear that part of the reason why the Direct Vote passed unanimously is that the dark side believes it can do substantial damage to the project through the amendments.  

After a very heated debate, at around 11pm at was agreed that the session should continue in three weeks’ time, thus giving the counsellors more time to study the different amendments before casting their votes on the 22 October. From our side, increased attention and preparation ahead of and during the session is crucial.

Stand proud, palmeirense. Yesterday, power shifted from the hands of a few hundred counsellors into the hands of approximately eight thousand club members. Behold the dawning of a new era for Palmeiras.

AVANTI PALESTRA!

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