Storied franchises bring a lot to the table

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:13 AM ET

Ask any soccer fan anywhere in the world to name a club team from South America and odds are they'll mention River Plate.

The Argentine side is one of the giants of world soccer, having won 38 major titles since its formation in 1901.

Former notable players include the legendary Alfredo Di Stefano, World Cup winner Mario Kempes, Argentine stars Gabriel Batistuta, Hernan Crespo and Ariel Ortega. Chilean striker Marcelo Salas and current star Alexis Sanchez.

Annually, in contention for the Argentine league title, River Plate make up half of one of the world's biggest soccer rivalries. Although they are considered one of the best teams in South America, whether they are the best team in Buenos Aires is open for debate, as they share city alliances with Boca Juniors -- the other legendary Argentine side, which once had Diego Maradona on the roster. Currently, the Millonarios as they're nicknamed, are fifth in their league standings.

Everton, meanwhile, also share alliances in their home city. Unlike their Argentine counterparts, however, Everton is considered the little brother to European giants Liverpool.

The club has played in England's top division for a record 107 seasons. They have nine league titles to their name and five FA Cup championships.They also won a European Cup Winners Cup in 1985.

They finished fifth in the league standings this past season, but were able to make it to the FA Cup final, losing 2-1 to Chelsea.

Former English stars to play for Everton include Gary Lineker, Paul Gascoigne and Peter Beardsley.

Currently they are captained by former Manchester United star and England international Phil Neville.

"This game is so important because it'll gauge on what we do next year," point man Mel Kowalchuk said. "We've already opened discussions with three big-name clubs for next year. It's something we're looking at, but we're going to take one step at a time and analyze things after this game. But we're hoping it does become a yearly thing."


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