Marcelo Gallardo - Guillermo Barros Schelotto - as coaches
Reuters/Action Images

MLS alums Barros Schelotto, Gallardo square off in Copa Libertadores final

The Copa Libertadores final is a showcase of world soccer, a glimpse of powerhouses, up-and-coming players, and sometimes MLS players past and future.

This year's Copa Lib final is a special one, a superclasico between Argentina's two biggest teams: Boca Juniors and River Plate. And in this unprecedented continental club final, there's also a fascinating MLS subplot.

The two managers previously played stateside, with Boca coach Guillermo Barros Schelotto turning out for Columbus Crew SC from 2007-2010, one of the smoothest playmakers in MLS during his successful stint in the league. Barros Schelotto has also been linked to MLS jobs in Atlanta and the LA Galaxy recently.

River Plate boss Marcelo Gallardo, meanwhile, played for D.C. United in 2008, the team's first Designated Player, but injury prematurely ended his lone season in the league.

The duo, always on opposing sides in club play, even faced off in MLS while they were both in the league.

Saturday's Leg 1 of the Copa Lib final, at Boca's famed La Bombonera stadium, was postponed until Sunday, due to torrential rains in the area.


September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Join MLS to #KickChildhoodCancer by tuning into eMLS 24 Hours of FIFA 20 on September 24 at 6:00 PM ET and donate to Children’s Oncology Group Foundation. Our Goal is a Cure ... Make it your goal too!