Dublin's Rob Smith chats about his Boca Juniors love affair and getting a selfie with Maradona
A dream come true
This weekend Rob Smith will get a chance to strike possibly a few things from his bucket list as he takes a trip to La Bombonera to watch his favourite team Boca Juniors.
The musician is heading to South America after a song he penned to celebrate his favourite club went viral, and climbed to number 25 in the Argentina charts earlier this year.
The Dubliner is also a Bohemians fan, but a trip to the northside isn't quite as exciting as a weekend in the heart of Argentina to mix with some of the maddest football fans in the world.
Ahead of his trip we spoke to the man behind the hit 'Dale Boca Juniors' and what he's set to get up to on a weekend of a lifetime
How does a Dublin man get flights and accommodation to take a trip to see Boca Juniors at La Bombonera?
'To be honest I'm still not sure how that happened. It's probably because I love anything Boca related on the internet and I'm always commenting on final scores on Twitter and Facebook.'
'A few months ago Boca Juniors featured me on their Facebook page as a Boca fan from Ireland which would be fairly unusual as you can imagine.'
'So with that a lot of Boca fans started to add me on social media and liking my page. Then I thought I'd make a punk rock record to put out down there and it peaked at 25 in the charts and it's kind of taken off from there.'
'It went to number 57 in the charts here which wasn't so bad considering I hand't really put it out for Ireland'.
Why write a song about them?
As soon as the interest came from the Boca fans it was my wife that suggested I write a song. I was thinking it would be nice for the fans and a way to show my appreciation to the club,and she was thinking 'the mortgage is due.'
'It's called 'Dale Boca Juniors; and there is only one line in English and the rest is in Spanish.'
It's the club main chant in the stadium. They would shout it during games so I took that line and repeated it over over again as a chorus in an almost Ramones style.'
How does a musician from Dublin get so into Boca Juniors?
'If you have ever seen one of their games then it's hard not to get taken in by the passion and the football. It's absolute insanity in there at La Bombonera and there is some cracking players who eventually come to Europe so it's hard not to have interest once you watch a game.'
'The first Boca game I watched was in 1995. It was when Maradona was making his comeback after a time in Europe. 'It was probably a more darker time in his life after the drug ban at the World Cup the season before.'
'Since then there's been players like Juan Riquelme and Carlos Tevez and I just fell in love with them really.'
How do you get around to supporting them when you're all the way in Dublin?
It's not really too hard because I'm a night owl anyway as a musican. Argentina is only three hours behind us and the games are around 1am so it's not too bad.'
'It's been said to me before to do a song for Bohs but there is something pretty cool about going to South America on the back of a single that was a top 25 song down there so it's just something different.'
What are you expecting when you get out there?
I've never been to South America before. I know the cliche of Argentina is steak,beer and mental fans and if I get to experience one of them,I'll be very happy.
What's the plan for the time out there?
'I fly out on Thursday and I won't really get there until maybe Friday morning, and to be honest the details are a little bit sketchy at the moment.'
'I head to the stadium in the afternoon and that night I have a DJ gig to do in a club and the next day I'm DJing in a place, which ironically is called 'The Temple Bar' which is well known Irish pub in the centre of Buenos Ares.'
'Sunday then is the game. I'm still not sure what's going to happen because there was serious trouble between Boca and River plate a few weeks ago so I don't even know if the game will have fans there or if it will be behind closes doors.'
How different is the football culture as fan compared to European action?
'I've been to to the Milan derby and I've been to a few Barcelona-Real Madrid games as well and they are good and they can be intense but from what I've seen on TV the intensity of matches and fans in South America is something else.'
'I cant fathom it at the moment so I really can't wait to see it first hand.'
'The closest I get to chatting to any other Boca fans is having a steak in the Buenos Ares Grill in Dublin city centre!'
'It's not really a known thing around here. You might see a few lads playing five-a-side wearing a Boca top but I've never really come across anyone to talk to.'
Any chance you'll meet your hero Maradona?
'That would be the dream. He has a box at the halfway line and I'm a bit of a chancer anyway, so I might go up to him and say 'alright Diego what's the story' and I might even get a selfie with him.
'I don't know what is going to happen but I've the seatbelt fastened anyway.'
Rob's kindly going to be providing us with some video diaries of his time in South America and his attempts to get that elusive selfie with Maradona over the coming weeks