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International soccer: Top 5 Most Famous Derbies in Latin American soccer

All sports, whether team or individual, generate rivalries, and soccer is no exception, especially when it comes to the most famous derbies, and especially in a land as passionate as Latin America. Throughout history, we have heard of many matches that have turned into real battles on the field because more than defending their colors, the players are defending their own pride or that of the institution they represent.

However, this is not limited to what happens on the field, but these rivalries transcend and for 90 minutes families forget their relationship and friends become enemies, all thanks to the passion that soccer provoke.

There are undoubtedly derbies in every league in the world, and perhaps the most famous is the Spanish one between Real Madrid and Barcelona, but here we mention the most famous derbies in Latin American soccer.

Which are the most famous derbies in Latin American soccer?

1.- Boca Juniors vs River Plate

Boca vs River
River Plate’s Carlos Sanchez, left, fights for the ball with Boca Juniors’ Fernando Gago, center, and Nicolas Colazo during an Argentine league soccer match in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014. The match ended in a 1-1 tie. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

This Latin American classic is the best known worldwide and is one of the most famous classics in the world due to the fact that in Argentina people love soccer more than anything else, and the fans have an inordinate passion for their teams. This rivalry was born at the beginning of the 20th century, since both teams were based in the same neighborhood: La Boca.

The first confrontation took place in 1908 and the result was 2-1 in favor of Club Atlético Boca Juniors, but the first official match was in 1913, on that occasion the score was 2-1 in favor of River Plate.

On December 23, 1928, Boca had the luxury of beating River by a score of 6-0 and to date this is the record for the biggest win in the Argentine Derby. The first derby in the professional era was on September 20, 1931, on the Matchday 17 of the First Division tournament and the final score was a 1-1 draw.

Both clubs are recognized as the biggest and most popular in Argentine soccer thanks to their history and titles. Boca has 71 titles, 49 domestic and 22 international, and River has 69, of which 51 are domestic and 18 international.

2.- Nacional vs Peñarol

Latin America's most famous derbies Peñarol vs Nacional
Matias Britos of Uruguay’s Peñarol’s, left, fights for the ball with Santiago Rodriguez of Uruguay’s Nacional, second from left, as Facundo Pellistri of Uruguay’s Peñarol, looks on amid the new coronavirus pandemic, at the Centenario stadium during a local championship soccer match in Montevideo, Uruguay, Sunday, Aug. 9, 2020. (AP Photo/Matilde Campodonico)

The Uruguayan soccer classic between Nacional and Peñarol is more than 120 years old.

Peñarol had another name when it was founded in 1891, The Central Uruguay Railway Ltd (CURCC), the name was in English because it was founded by English immigrants who came to settle in this South American country. It quickly gained popularity, but eight years later the competition, Club Nacional, emerged.

The emergence of Nacional, as the name already warned, sought to count on local talent, since at that time most of the clubs were made up of foreigners.

The first match between CURCC and Nacional took place on July 15, 1900, where the “carbonero” won by a score of 0-2. In 1913 the history of CURCC changed and became Club Atletico Peñarol, as it kept the colors, the fans did not show any rejection.

The first classic between Nacional and Peñarol took place on December 14, 1913, and the result was a 2-2 draw. They have played 559 matches throughout history and Peñarol has a slight advantage with 196 wins to Nacional’s 178, while the remaining 179 were draws. Of the total number of classics, six were annulled.

3.- Palmeiras vs Corinthians

Palmeiras vs Corinthians
Corinthians’ Carlos Tevez, from Argentina, right, fights for the ball against Palmeiras’ Leo Silva, during their Sao Paulo Championship soccer league match at the Morumbi Stadium in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on Sunday, March 26, 2006. (AP Photo/Andre Penner)

This is one of the biggest rivalries in Brazilian football. It is known as the “Derby Paulista”, as they are the most popular teams in Sao Paulo, Brazil. It was played for the first time on May 6, 1917, and the score was 3-0 in favor of Palestra Italia, the name by which Palmeiras was known until 1942.

They have faced each other in state, national and international championships and have played a total of 368 times against each other. Although the difference is small, Palmeiras leads the record with 130 victories to Corinthians’s 129; the other 112 matches ended in draws.

4.- Colo Colo vs Universidad de Chile

Colo Colo vs U. de Chile
Colo Colo’s player Alexis Sanchez, left, fights for the ball with Waldo Ponce, of Universidad de Chile, during soccer game at Monumental stadium, in Santiago, Chile, Sunday, Oct. 29, 2006, by Chilean first division soccer match. (AP Photo/Santiago Llanquin)

This classic has 87 years of history. It was played for the first time on June 9, 1935 and at that time, Colo Colo won by a score of 3-2. Colo Colo and Universidad de Chile are the most popular teams in Chilean soccer, and also the most winning teams in the First Division.

The biggest win in this type of confrontation belongs to Colo Colo, which won 6-0 on August 7, 1938. These teams have met in 109 first division matches, of which 87 have been victories for El Cacique, while La U has 48 wins. They finished tied on 55 occasions.

5.- América vs Chivas

America vs Chivas
Chivas player Francisco Palencia, left, fights for the ball against America’s Hugo Castillo during their Mexican Soccer League Match celebrated at the Jalisco Stadium, Saturday, May 1 2004, in Guadalajara City, Mexico. (AP Photo/Guillermo Arias)

Called the national classic or “clásico de clásicos”, this is the most popular rivalry in Mexican soccer. Club América is known for being the wealthy team of the nation’s capital, while Chivas represents the people. America is known for having the best signings from abroad, while Chivas boasts of being the only team in the league to play with an all-Mexican squad.

Although they first met in 1932, the rivalry as such emerged in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The only league final between these teams is known as the final of the century. It happened in the 1983-1984 season and the winner was the team from the capital by a score of 3-1. They have met 243 times, with 88 wins for the Águilas, 77 for the Rebaño and 78 draws.


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Written by Mayra Madrigal

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