River Plate fans go crazy on the streets of Buenos Aires after beating Boca Juniors to win the Copa Libertadores

10 Dec

River Plate are the Copa Libertadores champions after coming from behind to secure an historic win over Boca Juniors in the second leg at the Bernabeu in Madrid.

In the controversially rearranged second leg, River Plate ran out 3-1 victors after extra-time to seal a 5-3 win on aggregate.

River Plate celebrate their victory

It was the first time in Copa Libertadores history that the bitter Buenos Aires rivals have faced each other in the final.

The second leg of the match had been due to take place at River’s El Monumental Stadium.

But it was moved more than 6,000 miles from Buenos Aires to the Spanish capital after it was postponed in November when Boca’s team bus was attacked by River fans, which caused injury to players and staff.

Boca had taken a first-half lead at the Bernabeu through Dario Benedetto but River hit back through Lucas Pratto and Boca’s hopes were badly hit after Wilmar Barrios was sent off early in extra-time.

Juan Quintero then all but settled a keenly fought encounter with a stunning strike after 109 minutes before Gonzalo Martinez broke away for a third, securing a 5-3 aggregate success, in the dying moments.

River’s victory sparked some amazing scenes back in Argentina, with thousands taking to the streets of Buenos Aires to celebrate the historic triumph by their club.

Peterborough boss Steve Evans becomes first to be suspended by FA under new booking rules

27 Nov

Steve Evans has become the first manager in English football to be suspended under new Football Association misconduct rules.

The Peterborough boss will be banned for the touchline for Tuesday night’s League One clash against AFC Wimbledon after receiving four yellow cards this term.

Steve Evans won’t be in the Posh dugout for the clash against AFC Wimbledon

The new bookings system was introduced in the Football League at the start of this season in a bid to curb abusive behaviour by managers.

Referees are permitted to award managers a yellow card for dissent, with a second booking leading to a red card.

A straight red card can also be awarded in cases of serious abuse towards match officials or rival coaches and players.

Evans received yellow cards for his conduct in Peterborough’s match at Charlton on August 21, with Gillingham on September 21 and against Accrington on October 20.

His fourth indescretion, triggering the suspension, came in last Friday’s 1-1 draw with Coventry.

The FA said in a statement: “Peterborough United manager Steve Evans will serve a one-match touchline suspension with immediate effect after receiving his fourth stage one warning this season for misconduct in the technical area.”

Evans’ assistant Paul Raynor is currently on three yellow cards.

Copa Libertadores final: River Plate vs Boca Juniors to be played OUTSIDE of Argentina in December

27 Nov

The second leg of the Copa Libertadores final between River Plate and Boca Juniors has been rescheduled for December and will now take place outside of Argentina.

The match between the bitter Buenos Aires rivals was due to take place on Saturday night at River’s El Monumental stadium, with the tie finely poised after a dramatic 2-2 draw in the first leg.

But it was postponed after Boca’s team bus came under attack from River fans as it arrived at the stadium.

The bus had numerous windows broken

Players were injured by flying shards of glass and affected by tear gas, fired by police to disperse the crowds.

Gonzalo Lamaro was left injured

Former Manchester City and Manchester United striker Carlos Tevez was among those affected by the incident and left needing treatment.

Carlos Tevez was affected by tear gas

The game was rescheduled for Sunday by CONMEBOL, South American football’s governing body, but was postponed again just three hours before the re-arranged kick off-time.

Now CONMEBOL have taken the decision to stage the game – regarded as one of the biggest in Argentine football history – outside of the country,

It will take place on either December 8 or 9.

Fans packed the El Monumental Stadium twice for the match but will now miss out on seeing one of the biggest game in Argentine football history

Several potential venues have been suggested by the South American media, with Miami, Paraguay’s capital Asuncion and the United Arab Emirates among the possible candidates.

It has also been reported that Boca formally asked CONMEBOL to disqualify River Plate and award them the trophy – a request the confederation has appeared to decline.

Crowd trouble in South American football is hardly new and the two legs of the final were scheduled to be played without away fans, as their safety could not be guaranteed.

But the scenes from the weekend were deeply embarrassing for Argentinian football, particularly as the country hopes to lead a joint bid for the 2030 World Cup with Paraguay and Uruguay, a tournament that England, Ireland, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales would like to host, too.

What is the Copa Libertadores?

Organised by CONMEBOL since 1960, it is the South American version of the Champions League and regarded as one of the most prestigious tournaments in world football.

It takes place annually and at least four clubs per country compete. Argentina and Brazil each have six clubs participating.

The tournament consists of six stages, with the first stage taking place in early February.

This year is the first time in history Boca Juniors and River Plate have faced off in the final.

Copa Libertadores Final second leg between Boca Juniors and Rover Plate postponed AGAIN after bus attack

25 Nov

The 2018 Copa Libertadores Final second leg between Boca Juniors and River has been suspended for the second time.

An attack on the Boca team bus on Saturday saw several players including former Manchester United forward Carlos Tevez injured.

Pablo Perez was treated in hospital after injuring his eye in the attack

The game, initially scheduled for Saturday was instantly postponed and has been suspended for a second time, with a meeting to determine when the next leg will take place to be held on Tuesday.

“The president and the council of CONMEBOL decided on Sunday morning the postponement of the return leg of the final of Libertadores 2018 with the aim of preserving sports equality,” said a statement.

“The new final date will be analysed and decided at a meeting in Asuncion on Tuesday 27 at 10am (local time) with the presidents of the finalists, Boca Juniors and River Plate.”

Three hours before Sunday’s rearranged 5pm kick-off (8pm GMT), the South American football confederation confirmed the match would be suspended, claiming there are not ‘equal conditions’ for both sides.

Argentinean police made plenty of arrests before Saturday’s originally planned game

Alejandro Dominguez, president of Conmebol, made the claim after Boca players were hurt on their team’s route to Estadio Monumental, the home of their fierce Buenos Aires rivals.

Earlier on Sunday, Boca had called for the match to be called off, claiming: ”Boca considers that these conditions have not been established and asks for the game to be suspended and sanctions applied.”

Boca Juniors fans pack La Bombonera to see final training session ahead of Copa Libertadores final against River Plate

23 Nov

Is it possible to love your team too much?

These Boca Juniors fans don’t think so, as thousands packed into La Bombonera stadium to see the players in their final training session ahead of the Copa Libertadores second-leg final against fierce rivals River Plate.

They lit flares, scaled fences and generally made a lot of noise.

Boca fans pack the club’s Bombonera stadium to see the team’s final training session before the second leg of the Copa Libertadores final against River
The first leg of what is South America’s equivalent of the Champions League ended in a 2-2 draw
Boca and River fans detest each other and for this game away fans have been banned from each leg, so many queued up to see the players train
Known as the Superclásico, Boca v River is one of the most fiercely contested derbies in football and this is the first time the Buenos Aires rivals have played each other in the Copa Libertadores final in its 58-year history
Close to 50,000 fans packed into the famous stadium to see their heroes and stadium access was eventually stopped to avoid overcrowding

Known as the Superclásico, the match is one of the most hotly contested derbies in football and it’s also the first time Boca and River have played each other in the Copa Libertadores final in its 58-year history.

It is also the last two-leg final the competition will stage.

Boca will be hoping to win the competition for the seventh time – and a first since 2007 – while River Plate have won the competition on three occasions with the 2015 edition their most recent triumph.

Won the Champions League and Copa Libertadores

Carlos Tevez (Man United and Boca)

Neymar (Barcelona and Santos)

Juan Pablo Sorin (Juventus and River Plate)

Dida (Milan and Cruzeiro)

Ronaldinho (Barcelona and Atletico Mineiro)

Cafu (Milan and Sao Paulo)

Walter Samuel (Inter and Boca)

Danilo (Real Madrid and Santos)