Boca Juniors - Universidad de Chile Preview: Libertadores semi kicks off in the Bombonera

The two teams prepare to clash for a place in the final of South America's most prestigious club competition, with the Xeneize enjoying home advantage in the first leg


Roncaglia, Schiavi, Insaurralde, S. Mino
Ledesma, Somoza, Erviti
Mouche, Silva

Gonzalez, Acevedo, Rojas
M. Rodriguez, Aranguiz, Diaz, Mena
Fernandes, Henriquez

Boca coach Julio Cesar Falcioni has made the surprise decision to include Pablo Mouche alongside Santiago Silva in attack. The attacker's future at the Bombonera is unclear after he publicly asked for a move following the quarter-final clash against Fluminense, but his pace is preferred to the skills of the on-loan Ajax man. There is one other switch due to an injury to Clemente Rodriguez, meaning highly-rated youngster Juan Sanchez Mino enters at left-back.

The U were boosted by a clean bill of health for their stars following Chile's back to back World Cup qualifying wins in the last week. No less than six of the squad were involved in La Roja's matches, as well as Matias Rodriguez who received a call to the Argentina team and Peru's Raul Ruidiaz, but Jorge Sampaoli counts on a full strength side and will line up in characteristically attacking fashion for the semi-final opener.

  • Boca Juniors and Universidad de Chile have met just twice in their histories, both games occurring in the 1963 Copa Libertadores.
  • The Xeneize ran out 1-0 and 3-2 winners in that tie, meaning they enjoy a 100 per cent record over their Chilean opponents.
  • Boca have lifted the Libertadores six times, an incredible four of those coming in the first decade of the 21st century. Universidad, meanwhile, have only ever reached the semi-final stage but broke their continental duck with 2011's Copa Sudamericana victory.
  • The Bombonera will look rather familiar to one U star. Matias Rodriguez (pictured right) came through the Boca academy before arriving at Universidad via Uruguay's Nacional, but never played a game for the Argentine club.
  • He is one of the two Argentines who make up the starting XI of Sampaoli, himself a Rosario native. Former Rosario Central playmaker Gustavo Lorenzetti also hails from the eastern side of the Andes.
  • Boca meanwhile will have mixed thoughts on remembering Azul legend Marcelo Salas. The striker was scouted by the club before deciding to move to arch-rivals River Plate, and lifted a total of four major trophies with the Millo in two spells.
  • Falcioni's men are chasing an historic treble in 2012. As well as the Libertadores, Boca are in the final of the Copa Argentina and also hold a one point lead at the top of the Clausura.