River Plate celebrated taking the early bragging rights for 2017 with a 2-0 win over fierce rivals Boca Juniors in Mar del Plata on Saturday evening.
Guillermo Barros Schelotto said earlier in the week that there are no friendlies between the two sides and given both managers ended in stands and referee Néstor Pitana brandished three red cards, this latest Torneo de Verano clash didn’t fail to meet expectations.
After a fairly dull opening 20 minutes both sides eventually began to carve out opportunities and only the work of Axel Werner in the Boca goal and Augusto Batalla for River meant that it was goalless at the break.
Nacho Fernández had the best chance of the game after half time but was thwarted by Werner but River didn’t have to wait long for their breakthrough. Juan Insaurralde was adjudged to have handled the ball in his attempt to stop Sebastián Driussi bursting towards goal and the young striker fired the resulting penalty under the dispairing Werner.
Shortly after and River doubled the lead when Arturo Mina headed in from a corner to all but ensure victory.
Barros Schelotto and Gallardo had already been sent to the stands earlier but a fracas on the pitch led to Insaurralde, Darío Benedetto and Sebastián Driussi all seeing red and so the match ended with River’s ten celebrating a win over the nine men of Boca.
River Plate 2 – 0 Boca Juniors