The Buenos Aires City government shut down Boca Juniors’ stadium, affectionately known as La Bombonera, following Argentina’s 2-0 defeat Thursday night against Uruguay. The closure was decided on the grounds that the stadium’s capacity was allegedelly over its limit during the match.
The game, part of the fifth fixture of the South American Qualifiers, was moved to Boca’s home stadium after the state of the field at the Monumental was deemed unfit due to a number of music concerts.
Boca released an official statement announcing the preventive closure and denying the accusations. The club once again accused the BA City government of having “animosity towards the institution.”
“Under these circumstances, the club considers this [closure] to be evidence of animosity towards the institution, something that has shown itself repeatedly throughout the year,” reads the statement.
This is not the first time Boca has claimed that the local government has it in for them. In February 2023, prosecutor Celsa Ramírez ordered the closing of the third row of stands at La Bombonera due to fear that they might collapse.
“La Bombonera is looking beautiful; it’s a party every time we play a home game,” Boca vice president and legend Juan Román Riquelme said at the time. “You would have to ask [prosecutor Ramírez] which club she supports.”
The club’s facilities were raided in August 2023 by Argentine military police due to a ticket fraud investigation launched in 2022. The house of Riquelme’s brother was also investigated in connection to these accusations.
Riquelme will be competing with former Argentine President and Buenos Aires City mayor Mauricio Macri in the Boca presidential elections, set to take place on December 2.