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Soccer-Former player embargoes Independiente trophies over debt

Reuters

March 25 (Reuters) - Independiente, embroiled in a tough Argentine promotion struggle, face the prospect of losing their international trophies including a record seven Libertadores Cups in a case brought against them by a former striker for unpaid wages.

Luciano Leguizamon, who played for the Red Devils in 2012-13 season when they were relegated for the first time, has embargoed Independiente's international trophies over the 2.4 million Argentine pesos ($301,300) in unpaid wages, the daily La Nacion (www.lanacion.com.ar) reported on Tuesday.

"It's not that Leguizamon's going to keep the cups but rather that they'll be auctioned to raise money," the striker's lawyer Ricardo Frega Navia was quoted as telling local radio station La Red.

"No-one wants to damage the club's image, we just want Independiente to pay what they owe."

Independiente's image, however, is suffering badly as they struggle to emulate fellow giants River Plate and bounce back from relegation after one season in the second tier Primera B Nacional. River won promotion in 2012.

They were looking good at the halfway stage in the championship but have not won in their last eight matches and slipped out of the top-three promotion places when they lost 2-0 at Sarmiento on Monday.

The record seven-times South American champions also have another four international trophies including two Intercontinental Cups they won in 1973 and 1984.

The 31-year-old Leguizamon now plays for Chilean first division side Everton. ($1 = 7.9657 Argentine Pesos) (Writing by Rex Gowar, editing by Ed Osmond)

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