Two of Europe’s most famous stadiums are reportedly being considered to host the second leg of the Copa Libertadores final after CONMEBOL ruled River Plate versus Boca Juniors could not go ahead at River’s Monumental stadium.
Following the violence that forced the postponement of the Copa Libertadores final second leg between River and Boca at the weekend, authorities decided the match would have to take place on neutral territory on December 8 or 9.
And now, with the authorities exploring a host of possibilities for an alternative venue for the crucial second leg, the two most iconic stadiums in Spain have been offered as options.
A group of Barcelona-based businessmen has reportedly suggested Barca’s Camp Nou stadium as a viable option.
And Spanish outlet AS later reported that Real Madrid’s Santiago Bernabeu stadium is “being viewed favorably by CONMEBOL, FIFA and the Spanish Football Federation.”
Outside of Argentinian borders, Spain has the third-biggest Argentinian population in the world, and the authorities are thought to be seriously considering one of the La Liga giants’ venues as a possible solution.
The city of Doha is also thought to be a strong contender to host the game at the 48,000-seat Khalifa International Stadium.
Qatar is offering to put up a huge additional prize fund to secure the game, with a pool of $11.5 million to be split between the two teams should the match be played in Doha.
However, it is understood that neither River nor Boca are keen on the lengthy travel required to play the match in Qatar, who view the game as an ideal opportunity to help promote their staging of the upcoming 2022 World Cup Finals.
In addition, the winners would also be in prime position for the Club World Cup, which takes place in the region on December 12.
And there are hurdles for CONMEBOL to clear to even persuade Boca to fulfill the fixture, with the club declaring themselves on strike until the Copa Libertadores title is awarded to them as a result of the violence from River’s fans.
Boca themselves were thrown out of the 2015 competition after ugly scenes in their tie with River that saw opposition players covered with pepper spray at the club’s La Bombonera stadium.
With that sanction still fresh in their minds, Boca issued a statement to CONMEBOL saying: “Any sanction different from the one applied to Boca would bring a clear and unfair discrepancy.”