With a talented prospect by the name of Juan Ramón Verón, the pincharatas beat Palmeiras 2–0 in a playoff after the final series finished 2–2 on points. Estudiantes conquered the title with an original style which emphasized athleticism and strategic preparation.
At each stage of the tournament teams receive 2 points for a win, 1 point for a draw, and no points for a loss. If two or more teams are equal on points, the following criteria will be applied to determine the ranking in the group stage:
Twenty teams were drawn into five groups of four. In each group, teams played against each other home-and-away. The top two teams in each group advanced to the Second round. Racing, the title holders, had a bye to the Semifinals.
Ten teams were drawn into three groups, two groups of three and one group of four. In each group, teams played against each other home-and-away. The top team in each group advanced to the Semifinals, along with Racing Club.