Boca – Club Idols
DIEGO MARADONA(1981, 1995, 1997: 71 appearances, 35 goals, 1 title) A fan of the club, he played a starring role in the club’s league championship win in 1981, scoring 17 goals. He then had another two stints at the club, in 1995 and 1997. He has a box at the Bombonera and often goes to matches with his daughters.
GUILLERMO BARROS SCHELOTTO (1997-2007: 300 appearances, 87 goals, 16 titles) This tricky, skilful and intelligent forward was bought as a replacement for Claudio Caniggia and his charisma and love of the shirt made him a favourite with fans, who would shout “Guilleeermo, Guilleeermo”, He transferred to a US Major League Soccer club in mid-2007 in order to enjoy more time on the pitch.
MARTIN PALERMO (1997-2000 and since 2004: 226 appearances, 169 goals, 11 titles) Signed from Estudiantes de la Plata in 1997, he became an idol thanks to his goals and the honours he won with the club. “El Loco” (The Madman) left in 2001 only to return in 2004, and was soon performing laps of honour. He is a left-footer with real character and a great goalscorer, particularly with his head.
JUAN ROMAN RIQUELME (1996-2002 and 2007: 220 appearances, 54 goals, 7 titles) A player with a prodigious right foot and a born leader who first came to the fore under Carlos Bianchi, Riquelme is a worthy successor to Diego Maradona’s number 10 shirt. He is also the inventor of the famous “Topo Gigio” goal celebration, involving him cupping his hands behind his ears. After a sojourn in Spain, he returned to Boca for six months in early 2007 and played a starring role in their Copa Libertadores campaign.
ANGEL CLEMENTE ROJAS (1963-1971: 220 appearances, 79 goals, 5 titles) The man nicknamed “Rojitas” was a skilful player who always identified strongly with the club. He was a typical product of unorganised football played in local fields, where he developed great waist movement for dribbling and a ferocious tackle. A spectacular player who was loved by the fans.
UBALDO RATTIN (1956-1970: 374 appearances, 28 goals and 4 titles) A powerful and charismatic central midfielder who spent his whole career at the club, which he joined aged 18. When he was sent off for Argentina against England in 1966, he sat down on the red carpet laid out for the queen in protest.
SILVIO MARZOLINI (1960-1972: 408 appearances, 10 goals, 6 titles) Marzolini was a skilful left back with a powerful shot who was signed from Ferro Carril Oeste and developed a strong affinity with Boca. Despite receiving tempting offers from European clubs (AC Milan, Lazio, Florentina, Real Madrid), he never accepted any of them. He also won the league championship with Boca as coach in 1981.
HUGO ORLANDO GATTI (1976-1988:417 appearances, 6 titles) “El Loco” (The Madman) was an innovative goalkeeper who helped Boca to their first international titles. He stood out on account of his appearance off the pitch and enjoyed coming out of his area with the ball during matches. He also patented the “la de Dios” (Jesuspose), a goalkeeping technique whereby he would run out to block oncoming forwards by crouching with his arms at his sides and his hands open.
RUBEN SUNE (1962-1972 and 1976-1980: 376 matches, 36 goals, 8 titles) He joined the club at a young age and played as both a central midfielder and a left back. He won everything with Boca and also scored the only goal in their triumph over River Plate in 1976, the only final in which the two clubs have ever faced each other.
FRANCISCO VARALLO (1931-1939: 210 appearances, 181 goals, 3 titles) A club legend who became the club’s top scorer since the professional era began. Besides calling him Pancho, he was also named “Canoncito” (Little Cannon) because of his powerful shot.
CARLOS TEVEZ (1991-2004: 91 appearances, 32 goals, 4 titles) Known as “The Apache”, he had his photo taken with Riquelme when he was ballboy at the club before going on to play alongside him in the Argentinian first division. People identified with him because he grew up at the club and for his bravery, commitment and origins. He is both a powerful forward and a prolific goalscorer.