The resurgence continues

My arms, my arms! I cannot feel my arms!
My arms, my arms! Has anyone seen my arms?

God knows where this has come from. Racing have looked a better team so far in the Apertura, but lost last week to Banfield and had a tricky match this weekend against top-of-the-table San Lorenzo in a clásico that surely, none of their fans thought they could win. But win it they did, thanks to two first half goals and a second half display which kept San Lorenzo at arm’s length. It finished 2-1 in El Cilindro. Racing are climbing slowly away from the drop, and the title race has just been blown wide open.

Adrián Lucero gave Racing a glimpse of light at the end of the tunnel with the opening goal in the first minute, finishing off a lovely move down the left between Maxi Moralez and Franco Sosa which culminated in Pablo Lugüercio setting the midfielder up. After that it was normal clásico fare, with tasty tackles and neither side able to get past the opponents’ defence with any real danger. In the eighteenth minute, though, Moralez got into the San Lorenzo box and was brought down by Nicolás Bianchi Arce. Referee Gabriel Brazenas pointed to the spot, and Maxi made no mistake to put Racing 2-0 up. Before half time, Racing could have gone further ahead, Moralez and Lugüercio functioning superbly together, but couldn’t find the finishing touch. The league leaders, for their part, looked nervous.

In the second half, San Lorenzo looked more like a team courtesy of a couple of changes from Miguel Angel Russo (the two Santiagos, Solari and Hirsig, came on for Pablo Barrientos and Juan Manuel Torres at the interval), and began to create some proper opportunities. When they arrived at the Racing goal, though, they met with an inspired José Martínez Gullota between the sticks, keeping out everything apart from a long-range free kick from Aureliano Torres that crept through the box and into the far corner of the net. In the end, though, La Academia hung on. They’ll celebrate the win. So will Tigre, Newell’s and Boca.

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3 thoughts on “The resurgence continues

  1. I don’t want to lose the focus here and I have to say this win was crucial to finally leave promoción places.

    We are 3 points ahead of Rosario Central now.

    What we need is to confirm our resurgence by winning on Wednesday at Arsenal.

    Our team is looking so much better than in previous seasons!

    The main reason were the additions of Leandro Gonzalez (he is immense on the flanks), Pablo Lugüercio (all he needs is to score a little bit more, but his work-rate already made him a fan favourite) and Adrián Lucero (who scored in two very important wins -against Estudiantes and San Lorenzo).

    On Wednesday we will probably concede a goal by Facundo Sava, who was a great servant for the club and I’ll never forget his passion and commitment as well as some crucial goals, but I think his departure gave Llop a great relief.

    Racing no longer have a lone reference up front. Sava never really mastered the art of holding on to the ball and wait for support. The players around him, mostly youngsters, were too tempted to play the long ball or cross it when it wasn’t the best option.

    Now we play with more pace and fluidity, which suits the likes of Maxi Moralez, the tremendous Zuculini, Gonzalez, Lucero and Lugüercio.

    I just hope we can hold on to at least 80% of these current squad for the Clausura.

    If we do it, we’ll survive with no problems. If we don’t…this win against San Lorenzo will be a distant memory and relegation will come knocking our door again.

  2. I thought you looked vastly improved as well, Seba. Watching the match yesterday I was struggling to believe it was the same club who earlier in this very calendar year were able to look so pathetic. A lot of the excuses have gone now (not least Blanquiceleste of course), and with their exit, a new spirit has come in and Racing are actually playing like a team.

    Still wish you’d kept hold of Bergessio?

  3. Great to have you back commenting, Seba! You must be so pleased with this turnaround. I’ve been hugely excited over the last few weeks. I was seriously worried by the lack of a top striker – and while it would be great to have Bergessio, it isn’t realistc… I was thinking a great finisher like Ruben Ramirez would be a good addition.
    But Luguercio is finally turning perceptions around. The goal he scored against Central was a huge one for him, in terms of fan perception and confidence, and the way he set up Lucero’s goal this week was lovely.
    Lucero is terrific. Shortly after scoring, wasn’t it him that got the block on Rivero and prevented an almost certain goal? Tremendous.
    And Leandro Gonzalez has impressed me from day one of his Racing career. It’s great to be talking about these players rather than the flop Paraguayans and the likes of Maniceiro.
    And at last Llop finally looks to have settled down as more than a stop gap. A few weeks ago, I would have imagined him being chopped in favour of Simeone, but now even if Cholo becomes available, you can’t see Llop going now. These are his ‘pibes’, he has brought the likes of Zuculini to the forefront, and it’s difficult now to argue that he doesn’t deserve the chance to reap the rewards.

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