Just weeks after relegation to the Nacional B was confirmed, Tigre lifted their first ever top flight trophy as with victory over Boca Juniors not only were El Matador crowned Copa Superliga champions but a place in the 2020 Copa Libertadores was secured.
A fine league season that saw Tigre finish ninth but still end up relegated called the entire promedios relegation system into question and yet while the club could have been resigned to their fall from the top flight, Néstor Gorosito’s side maintained their momentum into the newly formed cup.
Victories over Colón, Unión and Superliga champions Racing Club meant Tigre were the form side in the final yet against a side as prolific in winning titles as Boca, the relegated club were understandably underdogs.
That mattered very little in Córdoba though as Tigre once more revelled in that status. Darío Benedetto provided something of a let-off for El Matador in the opening exchanges, hitting the post when one-on-one with goalkeeper Gonzalo Marinelli and soon after it was Tigre’s number nine who broke the deadlock. Just as Benedetto’s loss of form proved a stroke of good fortune so too did Esteban Andrada’s off night as the Copa América selected goalkeeper failed to hold Federico González’s near-post strike and allowed the ball to dribble over the line.
And it got worse for Boca. González released Lucas Janson and as the forward attempted to get his shot away, Carlos Izquierdoz dragged him back prompting Néstor Pitana to point to the spot despite Boca’s protestations. Janson struck it firmly under Andrada and with a little over half an hour gone, Tigre were flying.
Mauro Zárate went within a whisker of pulling one back before the break with a free-kick that bent past Marinelli’s upright and it set up something of a siege on the Tigre goal during the second half.
An out of sorts Benedetto had a hat-trick of further efforts, nodding wide from close range, drawing a good stop from Marinelli from range and heading against the crossbar as a frustrated Boca began to realise it wasn’t to be.
Tigre held on and while the club might not be in the top flight next season, the first trophy in their 116-year existence sparked jubilant celebrations.