Boca Juniors request Copa Libertadores final suspension after fan violence

Virginia Santiago
November 28, 2018

The second leg, finely poised at 2-2, was delayed twice on Saturday before being rescheduled for the following day after River Plate fans smashed windows on the Boca Juniors coach on the team's approach to El Monumental stadium in Buenos Aires.

The first leg between the two Buenos Aires-based sides ended 2-2.

The Copa Libertadores final between River Plate and Boca Juniors, originally planned for November 24, has been postponed for a second time following Saturday's crowd trouble.

Team captain Pablo Perez and midfielder Gonzalo Lamardo suffered eye injuries from shattered glass. The match was cancelled, there are calls to include "river Plate" technical defeat. When the teams of each club enter the field, we want there to be equal conditions.

Boca president Daniel Angelici and River counterpart Rodolfo D'Onofrio will meet with CONMEBOL to discuss a date for the third attempt at playing the match.

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"You don't know if your vehicle is going to get broken into", said Ayrton da Silva, who was at the stadium when the postponement was announced.

Boca's request for the latest postponement centred on a desire for the showpiece continental decider to be played "under equal conditions" following the "acts of violence" that were witnessed on Sunday.

The footage of the astonishing moment a insane female fan of Boca's rivals River Plate was filmed bending down to fix the flares round the child's belly, went viral.

Three years ago, Conmebol used Article 18 to punish Boca after their fans attacked River players with pepper spray at half-time of a Copa Libertadores quarter-final tie.

But Saturday's scheduled final will instead be remembered for the violence that left players bleeding and nearly all the windows on one side of the Boca bus shattered.

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On Saturday, Boca said they were in no position to play the game due to the injured parties needing medical treatment at hospital.

The conditions are not right for the final match. How do you take this decision now?

The first meeting ended in a 2-2 draw almost a fortnight ago after being rescheduled due to torrential rain.

"This hurts me a lot", said Juan Angel Oviedo, 24, "because of everything that's happening in this country".

The Copa Libertadores winners are also due to represent South America at the Club World Cup in the United Arab Emirates from December 12-22.

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