Vélez will have the chance to move four points clear in the race for the title on Sunday after the other two main contenders, Lanús and Colón, both lost on Saturday. Elsewere it would seem Tolo Gallego’s found Independiente’s best side, and there was a first win in five matches for San Lorenzo, courtesy of a striker their new boss Diego Simeone wanted to buy off them when he in charge of Estudiantes…
In a crucial relegation encounter, Central also beat Gimnasia de Jujuy, leaving the north-westerners all but down and lifting their own points total in the Promedio table level with Racing. This means the Avellaneda side will need at least a point in Sunday’s match with Arsenal to stay clear of the relegation places. Ezequiel González scored the only goal for Central in the 42nd minute, and got himself sent off with nine minutes to go for showing dissent towards referee Javier Collado. He couldn’t have got himself suspended at a worse time – the man of the match this week, he’ll have to watch next week’s clásico against Newell’s from the stands.
Independiente look much improved from recent form though, and after playing hardball with some of the squad and trying to change the way the side are set up, Américo Gallego got a response in a 4-1 battering of Tigre, who for the second year running are failing to follow up an impressive Apertura with an equally good showing in the Clausura. Leonel Ríos opened the scoring for El Rojo eleven minutes before the break, and by the time the interval had arrived the lead had already been doubled through Darío Gandín. In the second half, a double strike from Daniel Montenegro sandwiched by a consolation from Carlos Luna completed the scoring.
Lanús and Colón’s missed opportunities came at home to Estudiantes and away to Argentinos Juniors, respectively. In El Sur it took 38 minutes for the visitors to open the scoring through Mauro Boselli, but after the break Federico Fernández (just after the hour mark) and Raúl Iberbia on the stroke of full time completed a victory for Alejandro Sabella’s men. In La Paternal, Argentinos continued to improve following their 4-1 mauling at the hands of Huracán a couple of rounds ago, beating Colón 2-0 with goals from Ignacio Canuto early on, and Gabriel Hauche halfway through the second half.
And Diego Simeone appears to have decided that the only way to get Gonzalo Bergessio in his team was to become manager of the club he already played for. It’s a gamble that’s paid off in only his second match in charge of El Cuervo. Away to Gimnasia La Plata, they were losing 1-0 with ten minutes left on the clock, Rubén Maldonado’s strike in the 52nd minute looking like the decider. In the 81st, Fabián Bordagaray levelled things up and, a minute into stoppage time, Bergessio won the game for San Lorenzo. Simeone’s unbeaten in two matches in charge now, so some of the bronca of Racing’s late equaliser last weekend will have lifted a little.