River Plate handed stadium ban over Copa Libertadores 2018 final chaos

Boca Juniors bus on its way to River Plate's stadium
Image: The Boca Juniors bus was attacked

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) have handed River Plate a two-game stadium ban for the incidents ahead of the second leg of the Copa Libertadores final in 2018.

The Buenos Aires club were due to host cross-city rivals Boca Juniors after having drawn 2-2 in the first leg in November 2018, but the game was postponed after an attack on the visitors' team bus.

The attack shattered several of the bus windows and Boca players were cut by broken glass and also suffered from smoke inhalation due to tear gas.

The game was delayed twice before being postponed by 24 hours, but safety concerns forced CONMEBOL into searching for an alternative venue, eventually picking Real Madrid's Santiago Bernabeu.

Pablo Perez
Image: The attack on the team bus left Boca players, including the pictured Pablo Perez, with notable injuries

Boca Juniors had requested for River Plate to be disqualified from the 2018 tournament, but CAS turned down the appeal.

A CAS statement read: "The panel considered that the appropriate sanction to be imposed on River Plate for the bus attack was two matches behinds closed doors, to be applied to River Plate's next two home matches in the Copa Libertadores.

"The scope of the CAS arbitration procedure was related to security incidents which occurred just outside the security rings when the Boca Juniors' team bus was attacked by River Plate supporters who threw rocks causing the windows of the bus to smash, and injury to some of the Boca Juniors players (the bus attack).

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River Plate won the Copa Libatadores for a fourth time with a 5-3 aggregate win over rivals Boca Juniors
Image: River Plate won the Copa Libatadores for a fourth time with a 5-3 aggregate win over rivals Boca Juniors

"The CAS Panel found that while River Plate had violated the CONMEBOL Disciplinary Regulations it could not order the disqualification of River Plate from the 2018 Copa Libertadores since such sanction would have been excessive in the circumstances of the case."

River Plate went on to win the Copa Libertadores in Madrid with a 3-1 win on the night after extra time.

The Superliga Argentina side have been drawn alongside Sao Paulo, Ecuador's LDU Quito and Peru's Binacional in this year's tournament, with their first home game scheduled for March 11.

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