Wednesday, 29 September 2010

More trouble for River

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

We've pointed out before that River Plate are in trouble. The only way they can be sure of staving off relegation this year is to go and win the thing. They sit fifth on the league ladder despite losing last week and only managing a draw at home to lowly Quilmes this time round, but they're inside the bottom three on the Promedio and that's what counts more at the moment. It didn't have to be this way after the Quilmes game as River were going OK after Mariano Pavone put them in front with a volley from a corner three minutes into the second half. All looked rosy for a 1-0 win, but a free-kick two minutes into stoppage time saw Miguel Caneo get his head on it to deny them all three points. That's Quilmes's third straight draw.

There weren't too many goals around this week, two games finishing without any as Tigre and Racing saw their mid-table clash end 0-0 as did the top of the table battle between Arsenal and Newell's. Three matches saw just one goal put away, most notably for Independiente who sacked Daniel Garnero ahead of their clash with Gimnasia. That's not a bad fixture to go into without a gaffer as Gimnasia are rubbish and Leonel Galeano made sure with a cool finish midway through the first half as the Gimnasia defence allowed him too much space in the box. Champions Argentinos got their first win of the campaign over their predecessors Banfield, Gonzalo Vargas with a 77th minute winner after great work down the left flank. A first-minute strike from Marcos Rojo was enough for Estudiantes to beat Boca who remain resolutely in mid-table. It was a stunning left-footed volley that gave the keeper no chance as it arrowed into the far top corner - a goal worthy of winning any game. Estudiantes had much the better of the rest of the game, but the one goal proved enough. In mid-table, one goal for Lanús saw them beat All Boys. It came in the last minute of the first half as a header from a corner came down off teh bar and was eventually bundled in by Santiago Hoyos.

Two sent off for Olimpo meant they were always up against in their game with Vélez who were already 2-0 up when the first red card came out. Juan Martinez walked through the defence and slotted in for the opener after 22 minutes and only five more had elapsed when Maxi Moralez did likewise down the opposite channel. Cristian Vilanueva was first to go when he picked up his second booking on 57 minutes and Eduardo Casais followed five minutes later. That just left Vélez to wrap it up with a third, Sebastian Dominguez with the freedom of the penalty area to tap in from close range. Two off at Huracán as well, one from each side, as their game with Godoy Cruz ended level. David Ramirez copped a straight red after quarter of an hour, but Godoy Cruz were ahead just before the break as Jairo Castillo initially saw his penalty saved, but he followed in to tap home the rebound. They went into the break level though, the Godoy keeper dropping a routine cross at Gaston Machin's feet and he couldn't believe his luck. Machin turned villain late on as he became the second to be dismissed, picking up a second caution with eight minutes to go. Finally, San Lorenzo drop away from the leaders after a surprise defeat to Colón for whom Damian Diaz got the opener late in the first half, sweeping up after the initial shot was saved. Joaquin Larrivey sealed it in second half stoppage time, a poor defensive header letting him in to tuck it through the keeper's legs and in.

This week, Estudiantes get the chance to go top as they play their delayed round four clash with Gimnasia before the weekend sees us reach the halfway stage as round 9 gets underway. Estudiantes face San Lorenzo on Sunday in a big game - it'll either first or second against third. Vélez, leaders for now, are away at Newell's while River Plate go to reigning Apertura champions Banfield. After breaking their duck at the weekend, Argentinos look good to double up against Gimnasia, but there's only more misery in store for Quilmes as Arsenal pay a visit.

Round 4, Wednesday:
Estudiantes v Gimnasia La Plata

Round 9:
Quilmes v Arsenal
Newell's Old Boys v Vélez Sarsfield
All Boys v Tigre
Godoy Cruz v Independiente
Gimnasia La Plata v Argentinos Juniors
Racing Club v Huracán
Olimpo v Colón
San Lorenzo v Estudiantes
Boca Juniors v Lanús
Banfield v River Plate

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