Boca Juniors beat Arsenal 2-1

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src=' ' class='caption'> Boca Juniors clinched the Apertura championship on Thursday with a 2-1 win at Arsenal.

updated: February 25, 2007 09:48 IST
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Buenos Aires:

Boca Juniors clinched the Apertura championship on Thursday with a 2-1 win at Arsenal. Roberto Colautti and Matias Donnet scored for the visitors to give them their 20th league title. Carlos Bianchi's side also lifted the Copa Libertadores earlier this year. Travelling support for Boca Juniors A huge travelling support from Boca Juniors made the short trip to Racing Club's El Cilindro, the temporary home of Arsenal. They were there in expectation, more than hope, that their side would capture the three points necessary to be crowned Apertura champions. The early signs were not good, however - a nervous Boca allowed Santiago Hirsig to find an unmarked Martin Vilallonga in the penalty area, but the striker somehow managed to scoop the ball over Roberto Abbondanzieri's cross bar. The visitors made the most of their reprieve as midway through the first half a pinpoint pass from Matias Donnet expertly picked out Roberto Colautti, who lifted the ball over Alejandro Limia and into the Arsenal net. The Boca fans roared their delight - their side moving a vital step closer to their 20th league championship. Limia’s lapse The title looked to be firmly in their grasp in the 64th minute thanks to a terrible lapse from the Arsenal 'keeper Limia. Although Donnet's speculative shot did curl away from him, Limia should have easily collected. Instead, the ball somehow squirmed out of his hands and dribbled across the line. It proved to be a decisive error, as Arsenal fought back strongly and deservedly pulled a goal back 13 minutes from the end. Penalty goal for Arsenal Christian Gomez was poised to shoot when Boca defender Clemente Rodriguez brought him crashing to the ground - referee Hector Baldassi immediately signalling a penalty. Gomez dusted himself down before coolly tucking the ball into the corner of the net. Carlos Bianchi's side then endured a few nervy moments before they claimed the title with two matches to spare. Boca will now receive their Apertura trophy when they play Olimpo at the Bombonera this weekend. Battles coming up… Fans will be eager to celebrate a highly successful year for the Buenos Aires giants, who won the Copa Libertadores in June. Bianchi has unearthed a number of young talents at the club - the best of them all arguably being 19-year old Carlos Tevez, who is being compared to a certain Diego Maradona. Boca will now turn their attention to next month's Intercontinental Cup - soccer's unofficial world club crown. The South American Champions will face AC Milan in Tokyo on December 14. (AP)