Juniors, River Plate draw heightens fan excitement, promises thrilling final
If there is anything more important than the result of the match between Boca Juniors and River Plate, it is that the fans on either side end up happy. Joy and harmony were felt on Sunday in the first leg of the Copa Libertadores final, which ended in a 2-2 draw and promises an exciting match in the second leg.
Since the morning, thousands of fans of the two most emblematic teams in Argentina, dressed in their respective colors and went onto the streets of Buenos Aires to celebrate, after the game had to be cancelled on Saturday due to heavy rain, the important match between Boca Juniors and River Plate finally happened.
“It’s a dream because there’s never been a final like this in the history of South America or Europe. We wanted to win but Boca always ends up winning in the end,” River Plate fan Martin Pablo told EFE, one of the thousands of “xeneize” fans who enjoyed the match at La Bombonera stadium, in the neighborhood of La Boca in the south of the Argentine capital.
The decision of the clubs - as has been customary for years for security reason - to not accept any visiting team fans neither in this home nor in the away match, on Nov. 24 at the River Plate Monumental Stadium, favored harmony in the stands of the stadium and the surrounding streets, where only the blue and yellow colors of the shirts of the ‘bosteros’ could be seen.
“We tied the match, but we’re going to win it in the River Plate stadium,” said Carlos, who enjoyed watching the match along with a crowd of fans at a bar in the neighborhood.
Among sounds of cumbia music, the smells of choripan - a typical Argentine sandwich sold from mobile street carts -, with waving flags, chants and a multitude of police making sure that nobody crosses over the line, the two halves of the match, plus the previous hours of the fans’ arrivals, went smoothly.