Former World Cup-winning captain and River Plate legend Daniel Passarella will stand trial for alleged fraud during his time as club president of River Plate between 2009 and 2013.
The head of National Criminal and Correctional Court No. 10, Judge Fernando Caunedo, on Wednesday rejected a request by the 65-year-old to block the trial. Fellow former club director, Diego Turnes – current the vice-president of Barracas Central – will also face trial.
The accusations against Passarella were brought by River Plate's sitting president, Rodolfo D'Onofrio, who claims an audit of the Buenos Aires club's accounts showed bad investments of about US$148,000. Passarella, who will stand trial on allegations of embezzlement and illicit association, could face up to six years in jail if he is found guilty.
Passarella, widely considered one of the best defenders in the history of the game, was the captain of Argentina's 1978 World Cup-winning team. He was also in the squad when Argentina won the 1986 tournament but couldn't play because of an injury.
Known affectionately as 'El Kaiser,' Passarella's reign as president of the Núñez club did not go well. On his watch, the giant club was relegated to the second tier of Argentine football.
No date has yet been set for the trial.