On 6 June 1973, Independiente won their fourth Copa Libertadores, beating Colo-Colo after extra time in a replay.
The most successful club in the competition's history, Independiente won their first tournament titles in 1963 and 1964, then won it again in 1972. As defending champions, they entered the 1973 edition in the semifinal group stage, where they advanced over San Lorenzo and Millonarios.
Colo-Colo, meanwhile, topped their opening-round group that included Uníon Española, Emelec, and El Nacional, then advanced to their first final by winning their semifinal group over Botofogo and Cerra Porteños.
Scheduled to be played over two legs, the Final opened on 22 May in Buenos Aires, where the two teams played to a 1-1 draw. One week later in Santiago, they drew again, 0-0, to force a replay at a neutral ground. They met on 6 June in Montevideo and again found little to separate them. They were even at 1-1 at the end of regulation before Indepentiente eventually found an extra-time winner.
Independiente returned to the Final three more times (1974, 1975, 1984) and currently hold a tournament-record seven titles. Colo-Colo eventually got a title of their own, winning it in 1991 on their only other trip to the Final.