Joel Sonora has been a fan of Argentinian giants Boca Juniors since he was a youngster, but it didn’t stand in the way of him delivering a sucker punch to his boyhood club on Sunday.
Sonora came off the bench and scored the winning goal in Talleres de Cordoba’s 1-0 road victory over Boca Juniors in Copa de la Superliga play. It was Sonora’s first goal of the new season, helping his side to its second victory of the domestic tournament.
“I have already said it many times about my feeling for Boca, but today I owe myself to Talleres and I am very happy for the victory,” Sonora said postmatch. “Today I want to consolidate myself in Talleres, I am fine here. As a child it was a dream to play in Boca, but now my head is in focus.”
“I’m a Boca fan, but when I play against I want to beat him. Because we beat Boca we don’t have to be relaxed. You have to keep delivering everything. In Talleres we have a very intense physical preparation. Luckily we are showing it in the tournament.”
Sonora scored four goals in 17 Superliga matches last season on loan at Arsenal de Sarandi, but since has rejoined Talleres in hopes of being consistent player for the top flight side. After delivering one assist in a 3-1 Matchday 1 win over Newell’s Old Boys, Sonora has appeared off the bench in back-to-back matches.
The 24-year-old is the son of Diego Sonora, a former player at Boca Juniors from 1988-95. Diego won five titles during his time at Boca before making the move to MLS and featuring for the MetroStars, Dallas Burn, and D.C United.
Both Joel and his brother Alan played in the youth system at Boca Juniors before heading different ways in their careers, but Joel made the most of his 15 minute cameo at his boyhood club.
“I dedicated the goal to my grandparents, that’s why I went to kiss the pennant,” Sonora said. “They are fans of Boca, I planned it with my mother the night before. It was a good way to remember my grandparents, that’s why I did it.”
“I was born in Boca, it is impossible for the fan to leave. Beyond everything, yesterday I wanted to beat him because today I owe myself to Talleres. It’s a dream to play in the Bombonera, but today I’m very comfortable at the club and I want to continue growing.”
The former U.S. Under-17 and Under-20 Men’s National Team midfielder delivered against his boyhood club to move Talleres to the top of its group with seven points from three matches. Following Sunday’s road victory, the club sits a point clear of Boca heading into a Matchday 4 trip to Newell’s Old Boys before matches against Lanus and Boca respectively closes out group stage play.
While he doesn’t represent Boca Juniors anymore in his professional career, Sonora keeps his dreams open of playing for the club one day.
“Boca demands to win everything permanently, he doesn’t wait for anyone,” Sonora said. “There are processes that take time, perhaps none of us were able to consolidate ourselves because of the little time we had to demonstrate. It is a dream to be able to play at Boca sometime.”