Boca in bid to convince Riquelme to stay

Indo Asian News Service

Rio de Janeiro, July 6 (IANS) Argentine side Boca Juniors have not given up hope of convincing Juan Roman Riquelme to remain at the club.

Riquelme announced he was leaving the Buenos Aires outfit after a 1-3 aggregate loss to Corinthians in the Copa Libertadores final Wednesday, reported Xinhua

"We are going to talk with him to see if there's any possibility of him changing his mind," Boca president Daniel Angelici said.

Angelici denied reports of a rift between Riquelme and coach Julio Cesar Falcioni.

"It was a tough season and in any group of people that spend long periods together there will be differences," Angelici said.

"But everything is settled within the dressing room and they are not matters that I get involved with."

Riquelme, who emerged from Boca's youth system in the mid-1990s, won three Copa Libertadores titles during two separate spells at the club.

He told reporters at Sao Paulo's Pacaembu stadium Wednesday he had "nothing more to give" to the club.

"I've lived through a lot these past six months," Riquelme said. "I didn't expect to play in another Copa Libertadores final. But now I feel empty and I can't play at half steam."

Riquelme has already received interest from several clubs, including an approach from China's Shanghai Shenhua, coached by Riquelme's compatriot and friend Sergio Batista.