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Velez Sarsfield’s claim to being Argentina’s sixth big club


By Rex Gowar in Buenos Aires

River Plate, Boca Juniors, Independiente, Racing Club and San Lorenzo are Argentina’s Big Five clubs.

Until Estudiantes became the first club outside the elite Five to win a league title in 1967, no other team had lifted the crown since in the professional era began in 1931.

Many clubs have won a league title since Estudiantes’ first success and Velez have become the most successful of these, winning their eighth crown at the weekend.

It puts them one ahead of Racing, who have won only one in the last 45 years.

One of the chief characteristics of the big teams is their derbies, the clasicos. The biggest is the Superclasico between River Plate and Boca Juniors, then comes the Avellaneda derby between Independiente and Racing whose two large stadiums are less than 300 metres apart.

Clash of egos at River Plate


River Plate’s former goalkeeping great Ubaldo Fillol, a World Cup-winner with Argentina in 1978, has resigned as their first-team keeping coach after what he felt as a lack of respect shown by Juan Pablo Carrizo on Sunday.

Carrizo brushed Fillol aside when the older man tried to console him as he left the pitch with jeers ringing in his ears after a blunder that allowed San Lorenzo to equalise for a 1-1 draw that left River in the relegation zone.

Referee’s apology does little to calm Huracan


As Estudiantes bid to give Argentina the South American crown by winning the Libertadores Cup final, the fallout from Sunday’s Clausura title decider continues at an intensity not unlike that which followed Chelsea’s elimination by Barcelona in their Champions League semi-final.

It was not a final as such, but Huracan went into their last game of the season a point ahead of Velez Sarsfield who they happened to meet in a title decider at Velez. The home side got the win they needed to overtake Huracan on points with a goal scored by Maxi Moralez six minutes from time.