Argentina: Boca Juniors and River Plate Rivalry Still Intense and Fierce as Ever

Ian RodgersWorld Football Staff WriterMay 6, 2013

Boca Juniors fans are renowned as some of the most passionate in world football.
Boca Juniors fans are renowned as some of the most passionate in world football.Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Boca Juniors and River Plate might not be the fearsome forces in Argentinian football they once were, but the passion and intensity of the superclasico remains as fierce as it always was.

The two teams met Sunday at Boca's La Bombonera Stadium, but the eventual 1-1 draw was held up for 15 minutes in the second half as the home supporters reacted in fury as River Plate manager Ramon Diaz was escorted off the field following his dismissal for allegedly insulting the referee.

River Plate opened the scoring through midfielder Manuel Lanzini after just 45 seconds of the match, but Boca's Uruguayan striker Santiago Silva levelled six minutes before the half-time whistle.

However, in the second period, referee German Delfino dismissed the River Plate boss, and Diaz was accompanied by riot police on his walk back to the dressing rooms as home supporters threw flares and objects on to the pitch.

Some fans climbed the steel fences separating them from the players and the pitch, and police responded by firing water cannons (BBC Sport). 

Boca Juniors have struggled in the league this season, while their neighbours are challenging for the Argentinian title.

The Xeneize have not won for 11 league matches and are third from bottom in the Primera Clausura (

While Boca and star player Juan Roman Riquelme have found life difficult this season, River Plate have begun to restore their reputation following their relegation in 2011 (BBC News).

With the help of former France international David Trezeguet, the Millo bounced straight back into the top flight after just one season (

They are four points behind surprise league leaders Lanus, who have 26 points, while second-placed Velez Sarsfield have 25 points.