Sports Clubs / Ultras: River Plate - Los Borrachos del Tablon

Football violence in Argentina can often be traced to the supporter groups that often face off against one another. What would be called ultras in Europe, these groups are known as barra bravas (fierce gangs) and are extremely violent to one another. One of the largest barra bravas are Los Borrachos del Tablon (the Drunks of the Bleachers), who support River Plate.

This group tends to be made up of a larger percentage of upper class fans compared to their arch rivals Boca Juniors. The Superclasico clashes between these two Argentinean super clubs are often flanked by violence between the two barra bravas.

One of the major facts that makes groups like Los Borrachos del Tablon different from European ultras is their involvement with the club. While they share the violent and hooliganistic traits, there is a business side that is unique to these groups. They sell tickets, decide who the chairman of the club is, help organize travel for fans (since the club doesn't) and even get salaries from the club itself. This organization makes groups like Los Borrachos del Tablon (and the Boca Juniors barra bravas La Doce) seem more like a cartel than a simple supporters group.

Considering that River Plate is one of the most supported clubs in the world (6th in a European marketing research study from 2016), this means that the barras brava of this club has a long reach. In 2012, the world's longest football flag was unveiled in a caravan of approximately 15,000 fans who carried it around Buenos Aires.

While not every River Plate fan is a member of Los Borrachos del Tablon or other sub groups, clearly such an organization has power for so many in Argentina and abroad.


Click for more Supporter Groups