5 Reasons To Watch Copa Lib Final

Don’t forget! The Copa Libertadores Final is Wednesday night at 8:50 PM EST on Fox Deportes. With the summer hangover following Euro 2012’s completion in full effect, the second leg between Corinthians and Boca Juniors from Sao Paulo should be a great source of  entertainment. The following reasons should compel any sports fan to watch soccer over mid-season baseball highlights or transfer gossip:

1. Rivalry. The South American rivalry is one of the oldest, most heated rivalries in all of world soccer. Widely regarded as the two best teams outside of Europe, Argentina and Brazil routinely produce world-class players and the most recent generation with Lionel Messi, Angel Di Maria, Neymar, and Pablo Ganso is no exception. Their local leagues have not always been lauded, but as host of the next World Cup, Brazil has made a concerted effort to start keeping their most talented young players and the domestic league has been improving.

2. $$$. Corinthians are the richest club in Brazil, raking in over $143 annually. This will be one of the last games in their 40,000-seat Pacaembo Stadium because they are moving to the World Cup-commissioned 68,000 capacity New Corinthians Stadium next year. Boca are no slouches either. Their 50,000 seat Estadio Alberto J. Armando is a mecca of world football and is even known for having its own heart beat due to the vibrations from jumping fans.

4. Player contracts. Boca Juniors suffered the unfortunate timing of contract expirations for three of their players, including Dario Cvitanich, Rolando Schiavi, and last week’s goal-scorer Facundo Roncaglia.  Ajax is going to allow Schiavi to play in return for financial compensation, Schiavi was able to extend his contract, but as of Monday night, Boca were still waiting to receive approval from Fiorentina to allow Roncaglia to play.

5. Riquelme. After his famous European Cup semi-final run with Villareal in 2006, and subsequent retirement from international football over a philosophy disagreement with coach Diego Maradona, the 34 year old Juan Roman Riquelme might have fallen off the radar for many commercial soccer fans. But the artistic midfielder is still plying his trade a high level for his boyhood club and don’t expect the drama to unfold on Wednesday without him having an influential say in the proceedings.

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