Starting with a draw

Machn challenges Villagra

Diego Simeone’s first match in charge of River Plate saw a virtually entire second-string side draw 1-1 with Pedro Troglio’s Independiente in Mar del Plata, after leading through a Matías Abelaires penalty at the interval. Gastón Machín got the equaliser near the end of the match.

River started with a side full of youth players, and were the better side in the opening stages, albeit lucky to escape when the referee failed to spot a handball in his own box by young defender Mateo Musacchio and goalkeeper Juan Ojeda easily saved a headed attempt from Carlos Matheu. At the other end, though, Abelaires was making the difference and causing some serious problems for the Rojo defenders, as he did when given the chance in Primera A during the Apertura.

All of River’s attacking midfielders and forwards impressed Olé‘s reported, but Abelaires was best of all, and it was his job to take the penalty after Nico Domingo was taken out in the box by Independiente’s ‘keeper. He tucked it away flawlessly and there were further embellishments in the form of a ‘blind’ pass from Marco Rubén and a wonderful save from Ojeda to close out River’s half.

Whilst River had been largely on top in the first half, the second was a more even affair with more coming and going between the goals, Independiente searching for the equaliser whilst River attempted to increase their lead. With twenty-five minutes remaining Nicolás Sánchez was sent on by Simeone, the young Chilean forward making his first appearance since missing the last third of the Apertura with a muscle injury.

River’s young guns tired and lost concentration towards the end, though, and that was when their opponents struck, young Uruguayan Guillermo Rodríguez coming on and showing some wonderful touches, crossing from the left for Machín to take advantage of Ojeda’s first mistake of the night, nodding gently home. Thereafter, both sides had chances, but the draw, when it was confirmed by the final whistle, was justified.

Elsewhere, Vélez beat a local side 1-0 in Necochea, on the Atlantic coast of Buenos Aires Province. Huracán lost by the same scoreline to Tristán Suárez of Primera B, whilst Argentinos scrambled to a 0-0 draw with Argentino B side Crucero del Norte.

9 thoughts on “Starting with a draw

  1. No Ursus, they’ll still have a sponsor when competitive action gets underway, but when they play friendlies, and particularly when their youth players are heavily involved (as they were in River’s case last night), some Argentine clubs – River among them – don’t carry their normal shirt sponsor. One exception to this, under their current business-run regime, are Racing.

  2. Wildmercury – on the above photo, it looks rather like there’s no sponsor on River’s shirt, and I know for a fact that youth team (actual youth team, rather than a first-team made up of youth players) games don’t include sponsors. So presumably that’s where the confusion’s arisen…

  3. Hay Cholito Simeone!,
    ayer genio de Argentina,
    en vez de domar leones,
    preferís cuidar gallinas.


    Cholito Simeone, oh my!
    Yesterday you were a genius in Argentina.
    Instead of taming lions
    you prefer to take care of chickens.

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