Argentine Superliga Round #16: Central Thumb Olimpo While Godoy Cruz Worry River Plate

Superliga Argentina

Friday

Estudiantes form is on the rise and they kept it going with a 2-0 win over Union. Former Portland Timbers attacker Lucas Melano opened the scoring 10 minutes after halftime. Juan Otero doubled Estudiantes’ lead and sealed the victory for the La Plata-based side. Estudiantes are back in the race for a Libertadores ticket while Union have dropped a bit to 7th place. Estudiantes 2 x 0 Union.

Lanus finally won a game last weekend as they beat River but they had a tough task on Friday with a trip to Racing Club. The visitors should have taken an early lead, though. Acosta was hacked down by Donatti in the penalty box. A red and a penalty should have been given but the ref gave none of those and awarded a goal-kick instead. A decision that would eventually haunt Lanus. It was Donatti, who should have been sent off, who opened the scoring in Avellaneda. Ricardo Centurión doubled Racing’s lead while Agusto Solari secured Racing’s victory minutes later. A goal where most credits should go to Lautaro Martinez: The youngster chested down a long ball, flicked it past the defender and wasn’t selfish when he got through on goal leaving Solari with a simple task. The Racing youngster has impressed recently and will most likely be included in Argentina’s squad for the upcoming friendlies. Lanus did score a goal but it proved to be nothing more than a consolation. Racing Club 3 x 1 Lanus.

Belgrano were the only team who were yet to concede in front of their home fans. With the emphasis on were. It took Velez just 7 minutes to break down the usual tight Belgrano defence. Mauro Zaraté got his first since his return. It wasn’t the first goal of the game though as Matias Suaréz opened the scoring after just three minutes from the penalty spot. The former Anderlecht-striker added a second with 17 minutes to go, giving Belgrano a 2-1 lead. It looked like Velez would pick up their third straight loss but they rescued a point in dramatic fashion; Agustin Bouzat levelled the score with just seconds on the clock. Neither side will be happy with a draw but it’s another much-needed point for Velez. Belgrano 2 x 2 Velez.

Saturday

Argentinos Juniors will be disappointed with their draw against Atletico Tucuman. They created a lot more opportunities but failed to put most of them away, and even needed a bit of luck in the end to secure a draw. Gaston Bojanich opened the scoring for the hosts after just 4 minutes. Tucuman did put away there two decent chances which saw Argentinos trailing at Half-Time. Toledo and Pulga Rodriguez the scorers. It looked like Tucuman would take all three points back home but Rafael Garcia headed a cross into the wrong net, levelling the score with just 12 minutes to go. The hosts were unable to add a third meaning both sides shared the points in the Diego Armando Maradona stadium. Argentinos Juniors 2 x 2 Atletico Tucuman.

San Lorenzo edged Newell’s in a 1-0 victory over the Rosario-based side. Ruben Botta hammered a volley home from close range, a goal that proved to be enough for all three points. Newell’s coach Juan Manuel Llop has been under heavy pressure recently, and deservedly so. La Lepra have only won just two out of their last 10 Superliga games, sitting in 24th place. Newell’s announced after the weekend that they’ve parted ways with Llop by mutual consent. It was an important victory for San Lorenzo though who seem to be the only team capable of putting pressure on Boca Juniors. San Lorenzo 1 x 0 Newell’s.

Temperley picked up a point against a rotated Independiente side. La Roja’s line-up changed drastically prior to their Recopa Sudamericana clash against Grêmio in midweek. The Argentines drew 1 x 1 in front of their home fans and will need to score in Porto Alegre to win the South American super cup. Temperley gave up a good fight and had some chances to score but so did Independiente. It was a fairly attractive stalemate as neither side were able to find the net in Turdera. Temperley are still in the relegation zone and it’s looking less likely each week that they’ll make it out of there. Temperley 0 x 0 Independiente.

Rosario Central absolutely thumbed Olimpo in Rosario. 20-year old winger Andrés Lioi was the star of the show, netting a hattrick in a 5 x 0 victory. Olimpo have now lost their last 5 consecutive games. A streak that most likely won’t see them surviving the relegation battle. Rosario Central 5 x 0 Olimpo.

Sunday

Arsenal’s director admitted it will be tough to move out of the relegation zone after their 1-1 draw with Huracan on Sunday. Arsenal did well and created plenty of chances but failed to put most of them away. They did open the lead via a penalty but weren’t able to fight back from Huracan’s equalizer on the stroke of halftime. They’ve won one, drew 5 and have lost 10 games this season. A record that sees Rondina’s men in the last position with just 9 points. Huracan will be disappointed to not pick up a win but a draw was probably a deserved result. Arsenal 1 x 1 Huracan.

Santiago Silva scored his first goal last week since his return to Argentina and earned a starting spot against San Martin on Sunday. El Tanque repaid his manager’s faith as he opened the scoring in San Juan. San Martin bounced back just 7 minutes later via youngster Claudio Spinelli. Spinelli actually is a model in his spare time off the pitch but has shown that he possesses an eye for goal: It was his second goal in his second game this season. Neither side were able to score a winner meaning the game ended in a 1-1 draw. San Martin 1 x 1 Talleres.

Gallardo has felt a bit of pressure recently as River keeps struggling in the league. They faced Godoy Cruz in the Monumental, who were yet to win a game away from home. River’s misery continued though as they were trailing 0-2 after just 25 minutes. ‘Morro’ Garcia’s goal was slightly offside but River had their selves to blame. They, however, did put in a hard shift and looked much better since Godoy’s second went in. They managed to bring the score back level and showed some promising play but it wasn’t enough. River 2 x 2 Godoy Cruz.

Boca faced a rotated Banfield in the Florencio Sola. The visitors are firm leaders in the Superliga and extended their gap to 9(!) points with a narrow victory over Banfield’s youngsters. It wasn’t pretty but Boca got things done, just like champions do. Carlos Tevez got on the end of a Pavón cross and opened the scoring for Boca after just three minutes. Banfield threatened Rossi a couple of times from distance but failed to get past the Boca goalie. Another victory for Boca who look to be on their way to the Superliga title. Banfield 0 x 1 Boca Juniors.

Monday

Patronato picked up a valuable win over Chacarita who’s chances of staying up are getting slimmer every weekend. Chacarita hit the woodwork twice and will probably feel a bit unlucky but it was a deserved win for Patronato, who managed to score 3 past Chacarita’s goalie. Patronato 3 x 0 Chacarita Juniors.

Tigre were trailing early on after Bordagaray had put Defensa y Justicia in the lead. It was somewhat of a miracle that they were still 0-1 down at the break. Tigre were wasteful in front of goal and Unsain had a stellar performance in goal for Defensa. The hosts did eventually manage to break Defensa’s defence down: Diego Morales scored the equalizer in his 100th appearance for the club. Tigre pushed for a winner but Defensa managed to hold on. Tigre 1 x 1 Defensa y Justicia.

Colon had a midweek trip to Venezuela were they beat Zamora 0-2 away from home, giving them a big advantage coming into the second leg in the Copa Sudamericana. However, domestic football continued as they faced Gimnasia in Santa Fe in the last match in Fecha 16. The visitors had plenty of chances but it was Colon who managed to get on the winning end. A goal shortly after the break from Correa proved to be the difference between two fairly equal sides. Colon 1 x 0 Gimnasia.

About the Author

Vincent van Raam
South American football enthusiast covering Argentina for @ByFarBlog.