Getting to an Argentine soccer match has been near the top of my to-do list since I got to Buenos Aires. However, due to some security concerns, it has become seemingly harder for tourists (or anyone that is not a fan/club member of the home team) to get into games for Boca or River Plate, 2 of the more popular teams in the country. Luckily, I continue to run into great people willing to help. Two friends, Bianca and Nahuel, whom I met at the running group mentioned in my last post, invited me to join them at the Racing Club match last Saturday as they faced Arsenal. Racing Club is one of the biggest and most popular clubs in Argentina, and their stadium is located on the outskirts of the capital of Buenos Aires. A few legs on buses later and I was there. I met up with them and Nahuel's brother and we were ready to go.
We got there over two hours early due to notice online that they would stop selling tickets at that time (which turned out to be false). After we bought tickets (About $22 USD), we had some time to kill, and there's no better way to pass time then a little cerveza in a nearby park. The tailgating scene didn't really line up to SEC football Saturdays, but it was a perfect day outside so it could've been worse.
Even though our tickets were the cheapest option, they got us to to the best section in the house: right next to the hooligan's section. The flags, the banners, the chants, the screams, the jumping, the yelling, I got to see it all. I'll be damned if they didn't sing or chant for almost the entire game...impressive stamina. I just wish I would've studied up and learned a few songs beforehand. We (yes I'm already speaking of them with 'we') won 1-0 over Arsenal in a game controlled by the home side. Considering that Racing are undefeated with me an attendance, I'd be surprised if some sort of marketing deal doesn't arise for me.
Let's Go, Racing!