January 23, 2018
Monday, June 13, 2011

Bombonera bids farewell to Palermo

The party at Boca Juniors for striker Martin Palermo's last Bombonera match before retiring was louder than Velez Sarsfield's Argentine title celebrations.

Boca could not manage a victory to mark their 37-year-old record marksman's home farewell and were held 1-1 by Banfield, hours after Velez clinched their eighth league title with a match to spare after beating Huracan 2-0 away on the season's penultimate weekend.

Second-placed Lanus bowed out of the race after their first home defeat of the Clausura championship, 1-0 to Argentinos Juniors, left them four points behind Velez.

Palermo did not add to his Clausura tally of six goals as Nicolas Colazo put Boca ahead less than two minutes into the second half before Banfield put a damper on the festivities equalising with a Facundo Ferreyra header six minutes from time.

"I still can't believe it. Palermo, who is my idol, came to greet me at the final whistle and wish me the best for the future," a stunned Ferreyra told Futbol Para Todos.

"I experienced so many things at this ground. I never imagined the fans would show me so much affection ... I'm enjoying this moment which is unique," a tearful Palermo said.

Thousands of fans lined the streets leading to the Bombonera before the match to cheer Palermo as he was taken to the ground known as the Chocolate Box in a convertible Torino.

Leading figures of Argentine soccer including Diego Maradona were at the ground where two fork-lift truck came onto the pitch after the final whistle to pick up the entire goal in front of the terraces as a gift to Palermo.

"This goal is special for me. Every time the ball hit this net it was an emotional moment," Palermo told the crowd before a show of fireworks.
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Edition No. 5055 - This publication is a property of NEFIR S.A. -RNPI Nº 5343955 - Issn 1852 - 9224 - Te. 4349-1500 - San Juan 141 , (C1063ACY) CABA - Director Perdiodístico: Ricardo Daloia