Each team will make one major change to the starting XIs posted here on HEGS a few hours ago. Injury keeps Juan Román Riquelme out of the Boca Juniors lineup; his place will be taken by Osvaldo Gaitán. Radamel Falcao García, meanwhile, has been passed fit by River’s medics, so Diego Buonanotte makes way and Marcelo Gallardo will now play as the lone #10 behind Falcao and Fabbiani. The scheduled kick off time is just over 20 minutes away, and once the game is underway the live updates will be right here.
Boca Juniors 1 – 1 River Plate (FULL TIME)
As well as the changes related above, there are two knock-on changes to the bench. Diego Buonanotte, of course, moves to the River bench, and Eial Strahman joins him there. Osvaldo Gaitán’s promotion to Boca’s starting lineup, meanwhile, frees up a place on the bench which is taken by Lucas Viatri.
15:11: Boca kick off.
10th min: the early exchanges have been not much to speak of, with Boca trying to adapt to life without Riquelme whilst closing down River playmaker Marcelo Gallardo quickly when he gets on the ball.
13th min: Boca extert some heavy pressure, first going close through Martín Palermo after a Fabián Vargas cross, before a scramble in the area sees Cristian Villagra eventually get it clear for River.
18th min: River have their best chance so far as a throw-in finds Villagra breaking down the left, but the left back is closed down quickly by Boca ‘keeper Roberto Abbondanzieri.
23rd min: A lovely gambeta from Osvaldo Gaitán carries him through the River midfield before he’s flattened without being able to make the wall-pass provided for him by Rodrigo Palacio. So far Boca are having the better of the play.
29th min: A Marcelo Gallardo free kick after some typically dogged work from Sebastián Battaglia in the midfield sees him concede a fowl from fully 35 yards gets a typically overblown buildup, but is poorly hit and cleared by Boca’s defence. Must do better.
34th min: A bit of a duel between Villagra and Gaitán on the Boca right results in a free kick for the hosts in a good crossing position…
35th min: …which is easily headed clear. It’s then played back in by Boca, and Battaglia – scorer of the only goal last time these sides met in La Bombonera – has a shot from outside the box pushed over the bar by River goalie Daniel Vega. From the corner, Palacio scuffs his shot over the bar.
37th-38th min: Marcelo Gallardo clearly doesn’t have the right boots on today. He’s scuffed another free kick, from wide on the right, into the one-man Boca wall, resulting in a swift counter-attack from the hosts, for whom Martín Palermo heads well over from the edge of the box.
39th min: Villagra is playing like a left-winger here, cutting inside and seeing an attempted cross beaten back out to Gallardo, whose attempt on the volley is well held by Abbondanzieri.
41st min: Gaitán sends in an inswinging cross from the right from a free kick, but it just evades everyone, as well as the far post.
44th min: River knock the ball about a bit in Boca’s half before Bou’s cross goes right across the box. Gallardo knocks it back across for Ferrari to cut it back, and Bou hits it in the half-volley – over the crossbar.
16:23: After some fannying about whilst River take a while to come out of the changing rooms and Boca even longer, and various streamers (at Abbondanzieri’s end) and balloons (at Vega’s end) are cleared from in front of the goals, the second half gets underway.
52nd min: We’ve had more action in the last three minutes or so than virtually the whole of the first half. River spend a good couple of minutes edging closer to Boca’s goal, with Gallardo at the centre of the moves, before Boca break from the halfway line and are only turned away by Gustavo Cabral at the edge of River’s box.
57th min: A dangerous free kick for Boca from the right wing is well dealt with by Vega, who gets a free kick of his own for being kicked by Palermo in the process.
59th min: ¡GOLAZO DE BOCA! Chávez gets the ball on the Boca right and cuts inside, feeding Palacio, who knocks it inside for Martín Palermo to shift onto his left foot before letting fly from just outside the box to make it 1-0.
63rd min: A Boca counter comes to nought as Palacio blazes over from outside the box.
66th min: River Plate substitution. Mauro Rosales and Diego Buonanotte replace Cristian Fabbiani and Gustavo Bou.
68th min: Buonanotte is brought down outside the box. Free kick to River…
¡GOLAZO DE RIVER! Marcelo Gallardo evidently changed his boots at half time. From dead centre, about 25 yards out, he whips the ball over the wall and into the top corner, just beyond Abbondanzieri’s reach. 1-1.
71st min: River look rather more lively following the equaliser. A cross from near the right corner flag is met by Falcao, who can’t get enough purchase on his header to properly test Abbondanzieri.
72nd min: Buonanotte causes palpitations down Boca’s left again, but is just offside. All the same he’s done more in six minutes since coming on than Fabbiani managed in 65 minutes beforehand…
78th min: Buonanotte rides a challenge in midfield before popping a ball over the top which Falcao races onto, beating Boca’s offside trap – but the Colombian drags his shot past the far post after leaving Abbondanzieri stranded.
79th min: River Plate substitution. Gallardo leaves the pitch to whistles from the home fans, to be replaced by Matías Abelairas.
Apologies to Boca fans – I’ve just realised Pablo Mouche has been brought on at some point. It must have happened whilst I was out of the room for two minutes helping my dad haul an armchair upstairs.
85th min: A throw for Boca leads to a quite ridiculous challenge on Mouche, and a left-sided free kick for Boca 40 yards or so out.
86th min: Gracián swings it in, Cabral gets the ball away but it’s soon back with the Boca playmaker, who wins a corner. Shortly after, Chávez puts a cross in from the left and Vega clatters into Palermo again. The goalkeeper stays down this time.
90th min: As we enter the last minute of normal time, both sides are still trying to win this, but a little of the precision required in the final third has been lost as legs tire…
91st min: A Buonanotte run looks like it might unlock a winner for River, before he’s sandwiched between three Boca defenders and dumped to the floor. He’s not pleased with the officials for waving play on as he stands up again, all of three-and-a-half feet tall.
92nd min: Cristian Chávez has taken a knock and is stretchered off, replaced by Juan Krupoviesa. An extra minute will probably be added to the three already signalled.
FULL TIME. After an extra couple of minutes owing to Chávez’s injury, the match ends after 95 minutes. A vast improvement in quality in the second half, and two fine goals, but no winner here this evening. Check back on HEGS a little later for any highlight videos I can find, as well of course as the rest of the weekend’s action in the Primera División.