The weekend’s clásico in the Nuevo Gasómetro was one, like last week’s super, in which a certain amount was lacking. Both sides seemed as preoccupied with guarding their own goal as each other, and less so with trying to score for themselves. An incredible finale, though, saw Racing snatch an equaliser from the jaws of the final whistle through a player a lot of their fans hadn’t heard of a few weeks ago, just as San Lorenzo thought they’d finally kept a clean sheet in this Clausura. It’s a point that’s all the more valuable for Racing after Banfield’s defeat of Gimnasia La Plata on Friday night.
After Racing ‘striker’ Lucas Castromán had given a superb demonstration of how to completely and totally screw up decent goalscoring chances, it seemed that any chance of a goal in Boedo had gone. Racing had had the better of the possession against San Lorenzo, even as Diego Simeone made his managerial debut in charge of the hosts against his old club, but couldn’t find a way to extend their recent run of three consecutive wins.
Then, with nine minutes of the ninety to go, Santiago Solari crashed a shot into the top corner of the Racing goal to perk his new manager – and former team-mate for the selección and Internazionale – up somewhat. San Lorenzo closed out the match, and four minutes of injury time were signalled. In the fifth minute of injury time (what’s this – a refereeing decision going Racing’s way?) Racing won a corner. Goalkeeper Pablo Migliore came up for it, and amid the confusion it was young centre back Matías Martínez who headed home.
Racing’s run of three wins on the trot has ended, but incredibly they’re now six matches unbeaten. Of the three title contenders, both Lanús and Colón have lost since Racing last did, and if leaders Vélez fail to beat Colón in Santa Fe on Sunday, they’ll have fewer points than Racing from the last six rounds.
Gimnasia La Plata, who lost at Banfield on Friday night 3-1, will have been looking on in hope and seen those wishes crushed as Martínez headed home for Racing. With Boca expected to field an inexperienced side away to Central in Rosario tomorrow, El Lobo need as many of their relegation rivals as possible to slip up. On Friday they took an early lead through Diego Villar, but were pegged back within ten minutes by Sebastián Fernández before Santiago Silva scored twice in the second half to win the game for Banfield.
Elsewhere so far this weekend, Arsenal drew 1-1 with San Martín de Tucumán, Cristian Pellerano scoring in first half stoppage time for the hosts and Matías Urbano levelling up for San Martín, and Tigre fell 1-0 to Huracán in Victoria, Juan Carlos Blengio seeing red halfway through the second half for the hosts. César González had already scored the winner for Huracán by that point, ten minutes before the break. I haven’t forgotten Estudiantes’ match against Newell’s (1-0 to the hosts as I type), but I’ve been rather unwell today so I’m going to bed now.