By Eurohoops team/ firstname.lastname@example.org
The fall of once great basketball club from Siena doesn’t seem to stop. Currently under the name Mens Sana Siena (prior known as Montepaschi Siena), the Italian team has been facing a major financial crisis.
The club has reportedly run out of money after only two months into the season and senior players decided to leave after playing three months for free. The financial struggles became undeniable this week (Gameday 24) after Siena couldn’t find the funds to send the squad on the road for the match against Legnano.
The game will be registered with an official 20:0 score while Siena is expected to be financially punished as well. The club is playing in the Italian second division and is in the relegation zone at the moment.
The Italian players association, known as GIBA (Giocatori Italiani Basket Associati), released an announcement titled “Siena: So dies a part of Italian Basketball” with their view of the situation while offering legal advice and help to Siena players.
The official statement by GIBA is as follows:
Yesterday, in Legnano, a piece of Italian basketball did not appear.
With Siena’s lack of presence, communicated at the last moment with a consistent impersonation of the whole movement, the soul of a beautiful and engaging championship like the one of A2 was wounded, in which Italian players have ample space and give life to tournaments every beautiful season, with the public identifying with their favorites.
Instead, after the bad luck of Legnano-Siena and the failed match, our basketball has regained the pages of national newspapers (Corriere della Sera, to name just one), for its shortcomings instead of its beauty. And this is a very serious problem for workers (players, coaches, managers, agents and other important figures) of a movement that in this way will be less and less attractive for the companies that would like to invest.
Investing in a show that, if it was managed with correctness and professionalism (as happens in the majority of cases), could only grow.
Instead, we find ourselves reckoning, this season, after the case of Naples in the Women’s A1, with the case of Siena, which the GIBA has moreover repeatedly brought to the attention of the world of our basketball, through its positions.
The Players’ Association has always been favorable of the growth of the movement, which leads to more jobs and therefore more well-being for everyone, but if every season cases like that of Naples or Siena disturb the scene, then it is if we continue to insist that, before a desirable growth, there will be a general repulsion of those situations that do not go, through new rules, strengthening controls and continuous vigilance.
We do not want fewer teams, but we demand more guarantees at any cost. Also because if the A2 starts with 32 teams, but is likely to start with 31, the decrease in the teams is, in fact, the worst way. That is in disregard of any right and without protecting workers who had signed regular agreements. Salaries must be paid, and must be paid on time, like any other expiry.
The situation in Siena is now emblematic of a basketball that has areas of shade that need to be reclaimed, so that the movement can strengthen itself.
Beyond declarations and resignations, which add nothing if not bitterness in the players who, as always, are the injured party of these ugly events, the GIBA, also following the statement with which the club claims that it will protect in the appropriate locations, confirms that will give free legal assistance to all the athletes of Siena who will ask for it.
A better basketball is possible, but the only way is seriousness, respect for the duties and rights of all the members.