Boca Juniors is arguably the most successful football club in the whole America. They've had promising talents and wonderful stars. Read on to know some of the best Boca Juniors players of all time.
Daniele De Rossi was a one-club man and heir to the Totti's throne inRoma
, but before his retirement the Roman gladiator went to Argentina to fight side by side with theBoca Juniors
heroes. It is just an example of the passion and love for Boca Juniors. The clubs has the mostCopa Libertadores
finals participating and needs only one extra championship to top Independiente as the most decorated club.
Boca Juniors is the most successful team of Copa andRecopa Sudamericana
. They have one of the most iconic football rivalries withRiver Plate
. Many of their stars went to the biggest European clubs, but in the end, Blue and Gold called them to La Boca. There are some idols missing in the list of best Boca Juniors players of all time. Idols like Antonio Rattín, Francisco Varallo, Américo Tesoriere, Domingo Tarasconi, and Antonio Roma that is an honor to mention them.
In the following article, we take a look at the all-time greatest Boca Juniors players who worked hard to make the club what it is now.
Nicknamed "The Madman", Hugo Gatti was a record breaker of playing 26 seasons in the Argentine Primera Division, which twelve seasons of it were in Juniors. He was known for leaving the penalty area to help in the defense line, and many times in attacks. When he was young, he would play in the striker position. He stated that it was the best experience to know how forwards tend to think and behave on the pitch. He began his senior career in 1962 playing forAtletico Atlanta
and moved to River Plate in 64.
After five years inGimnasia La Plata
and a season in Union Santa Fe, in 1976 he joined Boca. Although he was already famous, Boca became his most associated club. As one of the
greatest Boca Juniors players of all time
, Gatti is the most capped goalkeeper in Boca Juniors history with 381 games and the second most capped player after Roberto Mouzo with 396. He won three championships with Boca — the 1976 Metropolitano, 1976 Nacional, and 1981 Metropolitano. Also, he won an international cup in 1970 and two consecutive Copa Libertadores in 1977 and 1978.
As one of the best Boca Juniors players of all time, he became the player of the year of Argentina in 1982. At the international level, he was theArgentine
's goalkeeper from 1966 to 1977 and capped in 18 games.
Widely regarded as one of the best Argentine left backs of all time, Silvio Marzolini played for the Boca Juniors club for twelve seasons. Marzolini only played in young divisions ofFerro Carril Oeste
other than Boca and it was only for a year. As one of the
Best Boca Juniors footballers of all time
, Silvio Marzolini played in every game of his first season in Boca and they finished third. He won five Primera Division titles with Boca in 1962, 64, 65, 69 Nacional, and 1970 Nacional.
In those twelve years, he played in 387 games and scored 10 goals as a left back. He also managed to win the 1969 Copa Argentina alongside his other teammates like Julio Melendez. From 1960 to 1969, he was the Argentine national team’s center back in the 1962 and 1966 FIFA World Cups, where he was selected as the best left back in the tournament. He capped 28 games for Argentine.
After retiring from being a professional footballer and one of the best players in Boca Juniors history, he became the manager of theAtletico All Boys
club for a season in 1975. He returned to Boca Juniors in 1981 as a manager of some very notable players Diego Maradona, Hugo Gatti, Oscar Ruggeri, and Miguel Ángel Brindisi. They got the championship that season.
As one of the best Boca Juniors players of all time, Hugo Ibarra was an icon at the club. He began his senior career at a second division club,Colon
, which after his two first seasons, they promoted to Primera. He joined Boca in 1998, and in three seasons played in 85 games, winning the 1998 Apertura and the 1999 Clausura. In 2000 they won the Copa Libertadores and the Copa Intercontinental titles.
After three successful years at Boca, which he always referred to as his home, he went to Europe and played forPorto
. After a season with 20 appearances, he was loaned back to Boca for a season because he didn’t have a passport. They won another Copa Libertadores title. Then he went on loan toMonaco
in the 2003 season, and then the SpanishRCD Espanyol
. In Monaco, they reached the champions league final, beatingReal Madrid
. However, in the final they were defeated by Porto, ironically.
Nicknamed “El Negro” went back to Boca for another five years, playing in 124 games until retirement. In 2005 they won the Copa Sudamericana and the Apertura titles. From 2006 to 2010, they won another two Primera Division mid season titles, the 2007 Copa Libertadores, and the Recopa Sudamericana in 2008. As one of the
best Boca Juniors players ever
, he played in the Argentine international team and in 2007 went back as the captain, playing a friendly match againstChile
Roberto Mouzo has the record of being a part of Boca’s Club and is the most capped Boca player to this day. In thirteen years being Boca defender, he played in 426 matches, winning six titles and scoring 26 times. He also shares a record with Silvio Marzolini of greatest appearances in Superclasico of Argentine football with 29 games each.
His senior career began in 1971, joining Boca Juniors, winning the 1976 Metropolitano and Nacional as the captain, and was named the best defender of the season. In 1977, they managed to win both Copa Libertadores and Intercontinental titles. In That year, Mouzo Managed to score nine goals in all the competitions and three of them were in Copa Libertadores.
In 1978 he got another Copa Libertadores with the team and they won the 1981 Metropolitano again. He was chosen by Maradona as the true figure of the team. After a year or two of changing clubs, Mouzo retired, but in 1990 he returned to Boca. He worked with the inferiors and was an interim coach of the first Boca Juniors. As one of the
all-time greatest Boca Juniors players
, he directed the lower divisions of Boca. In 2003, he left the club, and again, from 2009 to 2018 he was the coach to Boca’s 4th division.
Sebastian Battaglia started his football career in the Boca Juniors youth squad. He made his debut for the senior team when he was 18 years old. Soon, Battaglia became a regular starting lineup player for Boca Juniors. He won three major league titles with Boca Juniors, including 1999 Clausura and 2000 and 2003 Apertura. As one of the best Boca Juniors players of all time, Battaglia also won several other prestigious titles, like three Copa Libertadores, two Copa Intercontinental, and one Copa Sudamericana.
Battaglia, after a marvelous era with Boca Juniors, received offers from the European teams. His next station wasVillarreal
, where his fellow teammate Riquelme was. Riquelme was not the only former Boca Juniors player of Villarreal. Martín Palermo, Diego Cagna, Rodolfo Arruabarrena and Fabricio Coloccini were other players that went to Villarreal after playing for Boca Juniors. Battaglia didn't last long in Spain and after a season, he returned to his home.
Boca Juniors was harvesting trophies, just like before Battaglia moved to Spain. The 2005, 2008, and 2011 Apertura and 2006 Clausura were the league titles won by Battaglia in Boca. Three championships in four years in the Recopa Sudamericana since 2005 made Boca Juniors the most successful club of the competition. Battaglia played in both legs of the 2007 Copa Libertadores Finals as a substitute. 2012 Copa Argentina was the last title Battaglia won. All these honors and trophies made Battaglia the most decorated and one of the
best players in Boca Juniors history
Francisco Varallo and Roberto Cherro were one of the deadliest attacking duos of football. In 1926, Cherro joined "Xeneizes" while he was 19 years old. Roberto Cherro scored around 20 goals in his debut season and had a great impact on the Boca Juniors championship in that season. It was the best first season for Cherro as the league's top goalscorer and Boca Juniors as the champion of Argentina.
In 1928, Boca Juniors finished the league as runner-up, but Cherro was the top scorer with 32 goals in only 28 games. His top performance was in Primera División 1930 that he netted 37 times and Boca Juniors won the league. In 1930, Cherro was called up to participate in the first World Cup in Uruguay as one of the famous and
best footballers in the history of Boca Juniors
. Francisco Varallo was the youngest one of the Argentinian squad in that tournament.
In 1931, Varallo joined Boca Juniors and formed a partnership with Cherro. Together, they won 1931, 1934, and 1935 Argentine league titles. Cherro and Varallo became the top two goal scorers of Boca Juniors. Cherro scored 221 goals in 305 caps and Varallo scored 194 goals in 222 matches. The record stood until 2010 that Martin Palermo surpassed them both. About the goal count of Cherro, different numbers have been reported. If we include all the competitions and unofficial matches of Cherro he has scored a total of 283 goals in 385 matches. So "Cherrito" is the unofficial top scorer of the club. He was truly one of the greatest Boca Juniors players of all time.
Martin Palermo is one of the craziest in the list of
best Boca Juniors players of all time
. He has many insane memories in football. The most notorious memory he has is actually a Guinness record for missing three penalties in a single match. He has done numerous good, crazy things, too. Once he scored a precious 40 meter header for Boca Juniors against Velez Sarsfield. It is also a Guinness book material because the ball bounced just once before hitting the net.
He has scored many insane long range goals, including his goal against Independiente which he was actually one step behind the mid line of the field. Palermo had his own journey in Europe and again, something crazy happened there, too. During a goal celebration at Villarreal, he jumped on a concrete wall to share the celebration with the fans, but the wall collapsed and broke Palermo's leg. In 2010, Palermo scored a vital late goal for Argentina that took them to the World Cup, where he scored another goal, making him the oldest Argentinian goal scorer in the World Cups.
As one of the all-time greatest Boca Juniors players, Palermo spent ten years in two spells at Boca Juniors. He had 404 appearances in all competitions and scored 236 goals in them. Palermo surpassed Roberto Cherro record of 221 goals, mostly in the 1930s and he is currently the top all time goalscorer of Boca Juniors club with 236 goals.
Maradona was so great that any team he played for should consider him as one of its bests. Despite, Maradona wasn't in Boca Juniors for a long time, but still he is the
best Boca Juniors players of all time
. Like many other Argentinian superstars, Boca Juniors was a gateway to enter European wealthy teams. Maradona took everyone's breath in his first team, Argentinos Juniors. After five years, 166 caps, and 116 goals, Maradona was the most wanted player. Boca Juniors' arch rival, River Plate offered a big deal that could make him the club's highest paid player. However, Maradona listened to his heart and went to Boca Juniors, where he always wanted to play for.
1981 was the year of Boca Juniors and Maradona. Metropolitano championship was the 20th title for Boca Juniors and the only title won by Maradona in Argentina domestic football. In 1993, after ten years of playing in Europe, Maradona returned to his homeland. First he joined another Argentinian club,Newell's Old Boys
, where he only played in five league matches. Boca Juniors was the final destination of Maradona's epic story in football.
As one of the best Boca Juniors players ever, he was in Boca Juniors for three years before his retirement. In Maradona's second spell at Boca Juniors, he had 29 caps that most of them were in the first season. Maradona's last game in Boca was against the arch enemy, River Plate in October 1997. Boca won the game, 2-1.
Carlos Tévez is the only, currently active one of the best footballers in the history of Boca Juniors. Nicknamed "El Apache", he joined the youth squad of Boca Juniors when he was 13 years old. Three years later, he made his debut in 2001–02 Argentine Primera Division. Before leaving Argentina, Tevez won Primera División, Copa Libertadores, Copa Sudamericana, and Intercontinental Cup alongside some individual awards like South American Footballer of the Year three times. He was 20 years old and already one of the favorite players of Boca Juniors fans. He used to wear number nine back then.
Tévez traveled the world and went to Brazil, England, and Italy before his sensational return to Boca Juniors in 2015. He had two great seasons withJuventus
and he was on an excellent form. He had won the domestic double in Italy with Juventus in 2015. In the same year, he scored nine goals in 15 matches, having a big impact on winning the Argentine Primera División and Copa Argentina double with Boca Juniors. That's why he is the first footballer to win two domestic league and cup doubles in one calendar year. El Apache won three more Primera División after 2015.
In his late career in Boca Juniors, Tévez won Copa and Supercopa Argentina. Despite he has missed lots of time away from Boca, Tevez is one of the most decorated and one of the
best Boca Juniors players of all time
. Some people consider him as the heir to the Diego Maradona throne, who is the idol of Tevez.
Riquelme is arguably the most notable Boca Juniors player since 1990s. Riquelme joined the senior team of Boca Juniors after spending a year at the youth squad of the club. As one of the best Boca Juniors footballers of all time, He made his debut for Boca Juniors in 1996 and immediately became a key player for the team. With the trust of manager Carlos Bianchi, he got an important role in the line up that led to three consecutive titles: 1998 Apertura, 1999 Clausura, 2000 Apertura.
From 1981 to 1997, Boca Juniors won only two league championships. Riquelme and Carlos Bianchi put Boca Juniors on the throne of Argentina once again. Their reign wasn't just Argentinian football, because they won back to back Copa Libertadores in 2000 and 2001. Riquelme's excellent performance drew attractions from European clubs.
In 2002, Riquelme moved toBarcelona
to be the replacement for Rivaldo in Louis van Gaal's team. The season was not great for either Riquelme or Barcelona. At the end, Barcelona replaced him with Ronaldinho. Riquelme remained in Spain as Villarreal player for three and half seasons and then he returned to Boca Juniors to finish 2006-07 season at home.
Return of "El Torero" was glorious. Riquelme scored three goals in Copa Libertadores finals and won the title for the third time. He remained in Boca Juniors even after retirement. As one of the best Boca Juniors players of all time, he's now the second vice-president of the club.