Mark Zuckerberg, Che Guevara & the famous followers of Argentine football

From the creator of Facebook to the Rolling Stones, meet the famous men who follow the twists and turns of Argentina's most illustrious football institutions from afar
By Daniel Edwards | South American Football Editor

The biggest clubs in Argentina have the ability to provoke joy and despair for millions of fans across the country. Few countries can compete with the passion shown in the terraces week in, week out, as the venerable old stadiums of River, Boca, Racing and the rest swell with expectant faces.

Those in the public spotlight are not immune to this infectious enthusiasm, whether or not they call the South American nation home. Clubs across the country can boast some very famous fans indeed, including a few names which could raise eyebrows.

Following on from the outing of Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg as a suspected Racing supporter, takes a look at the global superstars who cast a keen eye on the Argentine Primera Division.

MARK ZUCKERBERG - Making friends in Avellaneda

Both football and social networking have the indisputable knack for bringing people together, so it is perhaps only natural that one of the most famous names in computing has a soft spot for the round-ball game.

Racing Club fans were shocked this week when pictures emerged of Facebook founder and billionaire Mark Zuckerberg on holiday in Buenos Aires, taking a siesta in the sun and wearing shorts with the logo of their club proudly on the front. So far Zuckerberg has declined to add to his support in dollar form, but his allegiances could explain the blue and white colour motif which bedecks his most famous creation.

RICKY MARTIN - Livin' la vida Boca

Puerto Rican music superstar Ricky Martin is well known for his love of Argentina, and especially La Boca. The run-down neighbourhood has been the stage for many of the singer's videos, and it is the eponymous team of the barrio which also keeps him coming back.

Martin has been snapped more than once in the blue and gold of Boca Juniors, and he joins an illustrious list of entertainment figures who are claimed Xeneixe fanatics. Matt Damon, Daniel Day Lewis and Robbie Williams have all been linked with the Argentine giants in the past.

CHE GUEVARA - Hasta el Arroyito siempre!

South American revolutionary hero Ernesto 'Che' Guevara was born and raised in the Argentine city of Rosario, where Newell's Old Boys and Rosario Central rule the roost locally.

Despite being more involved in rugby as a teenager, the young doctor was a passionate fan of Central, although, as biographer Hugo Gambini pointed out, it was more a case of defending local honour than any great admiration for the Canalla playing style:

"When [Che] discovered Rosario Central, the club from his city of birth, he became a fervent supporter. From that moment he loved when he was asked 'what team are you?' because it gave him the chance to reply 'Rosario, Rosario Central, I am Rosarino.' He did not have a clue about the city nor had he ever seen his team, but he was Rosarino and he defended his identity."

VIGGO MORTENSEN - The lord of Bajo Flores

Launched into worldwide fame thanks to his part as Aragorn in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, Viggo Mortensen is nevertheless just as comfortable cheering on San Lorenzo in the Nuevo Gasometro as he is slaying computer-generated orcs and goblins on-screen.

The American-born actor spent a significant proportion of his childhood in Argentina, where he learnt fluent Spanish and also cultivated a deep love for the Cuervo. He affirms that he never misses a game on television, wherever he is in the world, and can be spotted in the stadium when he returns to Argentina. He has also donated a significant amount of money to aid in investing in the club's infrastructure in the past.

THE ROLLING STONES - Rollin' on the River

The Estadio Monumental is one of the biggest music venues in Argentina, and attracts acts from across the world to play at the home of River Plate. And from time to time, strumming away in the site of the 1978 World Cup final can be a great recruitment tool for the current Nacional B side.

This is what happened when the Rolling Stones came to town. Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Bill Wyman were feted as heroes by the Millo when visiting Buenos Aires, and were delighted to be presented with River shirts complete with the famous protruding tongue emblazoned on the front.

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