The fans arrived early on and gathered outside the stadium to show their love for Marcelo Gallardo, who was the key figure on such a special Sunday for all River Plate supporters. There were shirts, flags, posters, and tattoos; no tokens of affection and appreciation were missing.
There was another emotional moment when “el Muñeco” came onto the playing field to sit, for the last time, on the bench that has been his for the last eight years and a half. The same bench from which he led the team through so many incredible achievements during this unforgettable period, which will remain forever in the memory and heart of each member and each supporter.
After the match, and surrounded by the fourteen trophies won at the center of the playing field, Gallardo put on the jersey and watched the video that the Club made for him. Then, Jorge Brito, Matias Patanian, and Ignacio Villarroel gave him a commemorative plaque: Enzo Francescoli, deeply moved, also took part in the tribute, together with the players and members of the coaching staff. Juan Quintero was in charge of reading a letter from the fans.
“Thank you for giving me your heart, I’m going to miss you all. My bond with River is not a one-year or eight-year contract, as was the case. My bond with River is for life. I love you and we’ll see each other again,” el Muñeco said to everyone at the stadium.