Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Arsenal slip lets Estudiantes take charge

Tigre 2-0 Gimnasia La Plata
Colón 1-1 All Boys
Huracán 2-2 Banfield
San Lorenzo 0-0 Vélez Sarsfield
Lanús 1-4 Godoy Cruz
Estudiantes 2-0 Racing Club
Argentinos Juniors 1-2 Newell's Old Boys
River Plate 1-0 Arsenal
Independiente 0-0 Quilmes
Olimpo 1-3 Boca Juniors

Leaders Arsenal were knocked off the top of the league last weekend as they suffered just their second defeat of the season. They lost at the Monumental where River Plate picked up a vital three points in their bid to stave off relegation (we've included the Promedio table as well, so you can appreciate the bother they're in). They left it late, Rogelio Funes with a thumping header from a corner with quarter of an hour to go. Both sides ended a man down, Roberto Pereyra and Pablo Aguilar sent off in the last minute after a set-to.

That loss sees Arsenal slip to fifth - that's how close it is. Estudiantes take over at the top, still with that game in hand as well, after a regulation victory over Racing. After a goalless first half, Enzo Perez got the opener seconds into the second period as Racing started slowly. The second came ten minutes later, Gabriel Mercado with a thunderbolt from 20 yards as Racing were overwhelmed. The cue went in the rack and they closed out a comfortable win. Vélez were held to a goalless draw away at San Lorenzo but that point sees them both move up, Vélez to third and San Lorenzo to fourth either side of River Plate.

At the other end, Quilmes picked up a point from a 0-0 draw with Independiente which lifts them off the foot of the table. Gimnasia slip to 20th after losing to Tigre and finishing with ten men. They were already two behind when Pablo Fontanello picked up a second booking, Diego Castana with the first on the half hour, a thunderous drive from all of 30 yards. Fernando Telechea doubled the advantage after the break and that was that. Another defeat for champions Argentinos sees them slip to 19th. They led in the 63rd minute, a strong run down the right and a decent cross setting up Gonzalo Vargas, but it didn't last. Comedy defending allowed Gabriel Cichero to equalise for Newell's quarter of an hour later and more of the same allowed Luis Rodriguez to ghost into the box unnoticed to head the winner nine minutes from time. Santiago Gentiletti was sent off in stoppage time, completing the misery for the champs.

Boca got a vital win, beating Olimpo with something in reserve. Lucas Viatri rattled in the opener, his fourth of the season, on the quarter hour, but Olimpo were level when Juan Cobo stole in to nick one at the near post a minute later. Martin Palermo restored the lead on the hour, making the most of a defensive blunder, and Juan Insuarralde had a free header from close range to win it. There were draws between Colón and All Boys - one each, an early penalty for All Boys after some outstanding lunatic goalkeeping responded to by Esteban Fuertes's second half header - and between Huracán and Banfield. Rolando Zarate got both Huracán goals, but twice they were pegged back within five minutes of taking the lead. The big winners of the week were Godoy Cruz who beat Lanús 4-1, three coming in the last half hour to seal it.

Next week, Arsenal take on Vélez Sarsfield in a top-of-the-table clash, but it's all falling into place for Estudiantes. They go to All Boys at the weekend while River Plate are in Rosario to face Newell's. The big game at the bottom is between Argentinos and Quilmes.

Gimnasia La Plata v Huracán
Racing Club v Lanús
San Lorenzo v Olimpo
Boca Juniors v Colón
Godoy Cruz v Tigre
Quilmes v Argentinos Juniors
Arsenal v Vélez Sarsfield
All Boys v Estudiantes
Newell's Old Boys v River Plate
Banfield v Independiente

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