Thu 17 March 2022 | 5:30

River Plate History, all about the Los Millonarios

History keeps long-lost secrets which can add a new dimension to stories we hear! Today, we will get into River Plate History and find as many secrets as we can.

Welcome to our article about River Plate History. Club Atlético River Plate, also known as River Plate, is an Argentine professional sports club situated in Buenos Aires' Nez district. The club was founded in 1901 and is named after the English name for the city's estuary, the Rio de la Plata.

Although River Plate participates in a variety of sports, it is best known for its professional football team, which has won Argentina's Primera División championship a record 37 times, with its most recent title coming in 2021.

Domestic achievements include 14 national cups, the most recent of which was the 2021 Trofeo de Campeones, making River Plate the country's most successful team in domestic tournaments, with a total of 49 top-division trophies.

River Plate has won 18 international trophies, 12 of which were organized by CONMEBOL and other international organizations. River Plate has four Copa Libertadores, one Intercontinental Cup, one Supercopa Sudamericana, one Copa Sudamericana, three Recopa Sudamericanas, one Copa Interamericana, and one Suruga Bank Championship to its name.

In addition, the club has won six events jointly organized by AFA and AUF: five Copa Dr. Ricardo Aldao and one Tie Cup. River Plate's reserve team also won the U-20 Copa Libertadores in 2012.

River Plate is the first and only team to hold CONMEBOL's three current major international titles at the same time, having won the Copa Sudamericana in 2014, the Recopa Sudamericana in 2015, and the Copa Libertadores in 2015. Do you want to learn more about

River Plate History

? So...

Let's dive into River Plate History

According to an Argentine Football Association study conducted in 2016, six of the eleven players in Argentina's all-time national squad had played for River Plate. In December 2000, River Plate was ranked ninth in the


Club of the Century vote, and in 2010, the International Federation of Football History & Statistics ranked River Plate ninth in a list of the finest teams in the world throughout the 1990s and 2000s, ranking as the top South American club.

Among other accomplishments, River Plate is the


team with the most games won, fewest losses, most points accumulated, most goals scored, fewest goals against, and best goal difference since the first championship held in 1891, and is first in the Copa Libertadores Historical table, being the South American team with the most games won.

Before we start to learn everything about

River Plate history,

we will take a look at some basic info about the club:

  • Full name:

    Club Atlético River Plate

  • Nickname:

    Los Millonarios

  • Founded:

    25 May 1901

  • Ground:

    Monumental Stadium

  • Capacity:


  • Chairman:

    Jorge Pablo Brito

  • Manager:

    Enzo Francescoli

  • Coach:

    Marcelo Gallardo

  • League:

    Argentine Primera División

The origins of River Plate

Ok! Let's start Sportmob's article about River Plate History with the story of its origin. River Plate was established on May 25, 1901, near the La Boca area. The institution was created by the merger of two clubs, "

Santa Rosa

" and "La Rosales," and its first president was Leopoldo Bard.

The name was inspired by an incident that occurred during the construction of Buenos Aires Port: one of the members witnessed how the workers of Dique 3 took a break from their labor to play a football match. The crates they were working with simply said "The River Plate."

The first field of the club was located on Dársena Sud in the Port of Buenos Aires, directly below the "Wilson" coal warehouses. Members and Wilson managers all contributed to the goals and boundary fencing.

When the construction was completed, River applied for membership in the Argentine Football Association, which was granted. In 1905, the team made their third-division debut, losing 3–2 to Facultad de Medicina.

Despite the efforts of club members and other collaborators to build the original stadium, Argentina's Minister of Agriculture ordered the deviation of the property where it remained, forcing the club to leave in 1906. José Bernasconi, director of Naval Storages "Dresco," offered the clubland near the Sarand little bridge in Greater Buenos Aires, so River Plate relocated to play its home games there.

The club only stayed there for a year, therefore in 1907, members Bernardo Messina and Enrique Zanni recommended returning to the same field in Dársena Sud because the Government had not replaced it. As a result, River Plate returned to its original stadium, where a grandstand would be built some years later to accommodate the team's growing fan base.

The story of the River Plate begins

River Plate fielded a team in the second division in 1906, finishing sixth in section B. The team had a much stronger season in 1907, finishing first in section A but losing the title to Nacional by 1–0 at Ferro Carril Oeste stadium.

After one season at Sarand, River returned to its home field in Dársena Sur in 1908, where the team played all of its home games that season. Following the conclusion of the regular season, the four best-ranked teams qualified to compete for promotion to the Primera División. River Plate defeated Ferro Carril Oeste 5–1, while Racing Club upset Boca Juniors 2–1.

The final was held on December 13, 1908, at GEBA Stadium, and River won by a score of 2–1 after extra time. However, the game was deemed void after River supporters ran onto the field to celebrate with the players, necessitating a rematch.

River Plate trounced Racing again in the second game, this time by a resounding 7–0 score, elevating them to the Primera División. Luraschi; Chiappe, Politano; Messina, Morroni, Chagneaud; Anempodisto Garca, Griffero, Abaca Gómez, Elas Fernández, Priano were the players who took part in the game.

River made its first-division debut on May 2, 1909, against Argentino de Quilmes. One of the season's highlights was a 1–0 win over famous Alumni and a disastrous 1–10 loss to Belgrano Athletic. With their promotion to the top flight, River Plate began to wear a jersey with red, white, and black vertical stripes instead of the white with a red ribbon band that they had previously worn.

River finished second behind Alumni in the top-level division in its debut year, winning 11 games, drawing two, and losing five. During those years, teams like Alumni and Racing Club dominated Argentine football, winning every tournament that was contested.

River won their first domestic championship, the Copa de Competencia Jockey Club, in 1914, defeating Newell's Old Boys in the final 4–0 and completing unbeaten. River also won its first international trophy, the Tie Cup, against Bristol F.C. of Uruguay. Isola; Chiappe, Lanata; Peruzzi, Cándido Garca, Alfredo Elli; Fraga Patrao, Martn, Penney, Gianetto, Sevesi were the players in that final.

River's first Primera División title came in 1920, following Racing Club's seven-consecutive titles. Nonetheless, the Avellaneda team had a fantastic campaign, finishing second. River relocated to a new stadium in Buenos Aires' Recoleta neighborhood in 1923.

The stadium was built on Alvear Avenue and Tagle Street. River had previously signed a 5-year deal with the land's owners, the Buenos Aires and Pacific Railway. It specified a monthly rent of $500. The team rented the land in successive contracts until 1935, when River Plate signed the latest for a two-year term. By then, the total had risen to $3.500. The stadium was designed by architects Bernardo Messina and Juan Viggo. Until 1938, the club's home games were held in Alvear y Tagle.

Old legends of River Plate

With the emergence of professionalism in 1931, River Plate paid $10,000 for right-wing

Carlos Peucelle

in 1931 and $35,000 for Bernabé Ferreyra in 1932. The River was dubbed "Los Millonarios" ("The Millionaires") as a result, and the moniker has stuck ever since.

Ferreyra led the team in scoring 43 goals. River and Independiente finished first and second, respectively, necessitating a play-off match to determine a champion. River defeated Independiente 3–0 to win its second title in Argentina's top league.

In 1932, River not only won their second league title, but also the Copa de Competencia, a national cup organized by the dissident "Liga Argentina de Football," defeating Estudiantes de La Plata 3–1. At the request of club president Antonio Liberti, the squad returned to its classic red sash outfit that year.

River won the "Copa Campeonato" and the "Copa de Oro" in the 1936 season after defeating San Lorenzo in the final game. River Plate won its first Copa Aldao the same year, defeating Pearol 5–1 in Montevideo.

River won the league title again the next year, totaling 58 points in 34 games, scoring 106 goals, and conceding only 43. With 37 goals,

José Manuel Moreno

was the leading scorer. Adolfo Pedernera, Renato Cesarini, and José Mara Minella were all prominent players.

The club not only won the league, but also the Copa Aldao, defeating Pearol 5–2 in Buenos Aires' Estadio Gasómetro. The team also won the Copa Ibarguren in 1937, with a 5–0 victory over Rosario Central at Estadio Gasómetro.

The Golden era of River Plate

The golden era of River Plate History is actually a decade. The decade of the 1940s is regarded as one of the best in the club's history, with titles in 1941 and 1942, national cups Carlos Ibarguren and Adrián Escobar, and the international Copa Aldao in 1941, 1945, and 1947.

River Plate won four trophies in 1941, including the local championship, its third Copa Aldao, which defined the series against Nacional in two matches, the Copa Ibarguren, which defeated Newell's Old Boys 3–0, and the Copa Adrián C. Escobar, which defeated Huracán. River won two more trophies four years later, the 1945 league championship and another Copa Aldao, defeating Pearol for the third time in a row.

In 1943 and 1944, the team was also a sub-champion. The River Plate used a devastating attack known as "La Máquina" ("The Machine"). Juan Carlos Muoz, José Manuel Moreno, Adolfo Pedernera, ngel Labruna, and Félix Loustau were the forwards.

Despite just playing 18 games together, that offensive line became a legend. River won another championship in 1945, with Labruna leading the way with 25 goals. Although Moreno had departed the team, new players had come.

River won a new league championship in 1947 with 48 points, scoring 90 goals and conceding only 30. Amadeo Carrizo, a goalkeeper, and Alfredo Di Stéfano, a center-forward, were two promising players who came up through the youth ranks. With 27 goals, Di Stéfano was River's leading scorer. The team also won its fifth Copa Aldao, defeating Nacional in the finals.

River Plate out of luck

Despite having several outstanding players such as Ermindo Onega, José Ramos Delgado, striker Luis Artime, Vladislav Cap, and Oscar Más, River was unable to win a championship throughout the 1960s.

This is considered the club's worst era, lasting until 1975 and totaling 18 years with no titles for the club. River's best finish during those years was second. In 1962, the team was defeated by archrival Boca Juniors, with the legendary penalty shot saved by Antonio Roma for Delem.

Another opportunity was wasted in 1968 when Vélez Sársfield ultimately won the championship in a mini-tournament held to determine a winner (due to River, Vélez, and Racing being in equal first place at the end of the season). Another domestic title was lost in 1969 final to Chacarita Juniors, who defeated River 4–1. They had behind Boca Juniors in the semifinals by goal average following a 0–0 tie.

River competed in the 1966 Copa Libertadores final against the Uruguayan team Pearol. River Plate had led 2–0 at the break, but Pearol scored two goals in the second half, necessitating extra time. Pearol added two more goals to win 4–2 and become the new South American champion.

The team's performance in that match gave rise to the derogatory term Gallinas ("Chicken"), which has since been used by opponents to refer to River's players and supporters.

Restoring the lost legacy

Angel Labruna took over as coach of the team in 1975. River won a championship under his management after going 18 years without winning one (in fact, River won two titles: 1975 Metropolitano and Nacional tournaments).

Goalkeeper Ubaldo Fillol, defenders Roberto Perfumo and

Daniel Passarella

, midfielders Juan José López, Reinaldo "Mostaza" Merlo, and Norberto Alonso, and attackers Carlos Morete and Oscar Más were among the squad's key players.

River Plate reached the Copa Libertadores finals in 1976, where they met Brazilian powerhouse Cruzeiro. After two matches ended in victories for each team, a third game was required in Santiago, Chile, where Cruzeiro defeated River 3–2.

River Plate also won the Metropolitano championship in 1977, with the addition of striker Leopoldo Luque and left-wing Oscar Ortiz to the same player structure as in previous years. The club provided five players to the national team that won the 1978 World Cup in Argentina: Fillol, Luque, Passarella, Ortiz, and Alonso.

River Plate completed another treble in 1979, winning the Metropolitano, Nacional, and Metropolitano championships.


, Alberto Tarantini, Luque, and Emilio Commisso were among the famous players throughout those seasons. Angel Labruna was not only River's all-time leading scorer, but he also won six titles as the first division team's coach.

The fortune is with River Plate

River Plate History is full of ups and downs;

Daniel Passarella

was named coach in 1990, after winning the 1989–90 tournament and reaching the Copa Libertadores semi-finals before being eliminated by Barcelona de Guayaquil. The longest streak of no victory over Boca Juniors began in 1991, with 13 matches. Ramón Dáz returned to the club that year after a career in Europe, and River won the 1991 Apertura with Dáz as the leading scorer with 14 goals.

Despite the fact that Ramón Daz emigrated again (this time to Yokohama Marinos) in 1993, River won the Apertura with a team comprised of youth prospects such as Ariel Ortega, Marcelo Gallardo, and

Hernán Crespo


Enzo Francescoli returned to the club in 1994, winning another title with River Plate that year (the 1994 Apertura), together with Roberto Ayala and goalie Germán Burgos (both purchased by Ferro) and being coached by former player Américo Gallego. For the first time in the club's history, River also went undefeated that season.

Ramón Daz took over as coach in 1995, following the brief tenure of Carlos Babington. River won its second Copa Libertadores the following year, defeating América de Cali in the finals for the tenth time. América won the first game 1–0, but River won the Cup by a goal average of 2–0 in Buenos Aires. In the deciding encounter, Hernán Crespo scored both goals.

River Plate would eventually complete their third triple, winning the 1996 Apertura, 1997 Clausura, and 1997 Apertura. Internationally, River won the 1997 Supercopa Sudamericana (also for the first time in the club's history), defeating So Paulo in the finals, thanks to outstanding performances by Marcelo Salas and Marcelo Gallardo.

Enzo Francéscoli retires after three championships and the Supercopa, and River recovers from his absence two years later. The River Plate team of 1996/1997 is regarded as one of the best in South American football history, with players such as Francéscoli, Salas, Julio Cruz,

Ariel Ortega

, Marcelo Gallardo, Juan Pablo Sorn, Germán Burgos, Celso Ayala, Matas Almeyda, Sergio Berti, and Santiago Solari.

River won the Apertura competition under Ramón Daz's leadership in 1999, with Javier Saviola leading the way with 15 goals. Saviola, who made his River Plate debut at the age of 16, is also the club's youngest player. Pablo Aimar was also an important player and playmaker.

That same year, River Plate was dubbed "Champions of the Century" ("Campeón Del Siglo") by Argentine sports magazine El Gráfico #4172, citing the club's achievements, particularly its then 30 Primera División trophies, compared to Boca Juniors' 24 and Independiente's 15.

Stepping into a new era

River won their 36th national league title on May 18, 2014, as they defeated Quilmes 5–0 in the 2014 Torneo Final. A week later, River defeated 2013 Torneo Inicial winner San Lorenzo de Almagro in the 2013–14 Superfinal.

Ramón Daz resigned promptly and departed River in the midst of both title celebrations. Several days later, it was announced that Marcelo Gallardo would be River's new coach. His squad was acclaimed early in the semester for the high level of its game style, but competing in three different competitions took its toll.

On December 10, 2014, the first team won their first CONMEBOL tournament in 17 years, the Copa Sudamericana. River Plate won the championships 3–1 on aggregate over Colombian rivals Atlético Nacional. River Plate had already defeated Godoy Cruz, Club Libertad, Estudiantes, and archrival Boca Juniors.

River, the 2014 Copa Sudamericana champions, competed in the 2015 Recopa Sudamericana against San Lorenzo, the Copa Libertadores champions. They won their first Recopa Sudamericana by winning both legs 1–0.

River went unbeaten in the first ten matches of the 2015 Argentine Primera División, which culminated in a 2–0 loss to Boca Juniors at La Bombonera. They also competed in the 2014-15 Copa Argentina, where they were eliminated in the round of 32 by Rosario Central 0–2.

Meanwhile, River began their 2015 Copa Libertadores campaign with a 2–0 home defeat against the Bolivian side San José. Then, at El Monumental, they drew 1–1 with UANL from Mexico. As a result, they faced Peruvian team Juan Aurich and drew 1–1 both at home and away, putting their qualification ambitions in jeopardy.

After falling behind 2–0 to UANL in Mexico, River completed an incredible comeback in the final 5 minutes to secure a 2–2 tie and stay in the competition. River qualified to the knockout stage after defeating San José 3–0 at home in their last group stage match, while UANL visited and defeated Juan Aurich 5–4.

River, the weakest second-placed team in the group stage, was drawn in the round of 16 with Boca Juniors, the best group-winners. In the opening leg, River defeated Boca 1–0 at El Monumental. River players were pepper-sprayed as they returned to the field after halftime in the second leg at La Bombonera.

The match was called off with a score of 0–0, and Boca was eliminated from the tournament. River met Cruzeiro in the quarterfinals, losing 0–1 at home but eventually advancing to the semifinals for the first time in 9 years following a 3–0 away triumph.

They faced Paraguay's Guaran, winning 2–0 at home, and drew 1–1 away to qualify for their first Copa Libertadores finals since 1996. River Plate defeated Tigres UANL 3–0 in the final to win the 2015 Copa Libertadores. Meanwhile, River's domestic form deteriorated, with three draws and six losses in their last 12 matches, and they ended ninth.

River tied 2–2 with Boca Juniors in the first leg of the 2018 Copa Libertadores final on November 11, 2018, before winning the second leg 3–1 at Real Madrid's Santiago Bernabéu to win the competition for the fourth time. Thanks for reading Sportmob's

River Plate History


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