Lanús stay top (with a bit of help from Gustavo Bassi)

Lanús 2-1 CASLA

After Huracán’s 2-1 win over Banfield on Friday night, they temporarily took the lead in the Torneo Clausura, but it was only for 24 hours. On Saturday night, Lanús beat San Lorenzo by the same scoreline thanks in no small part to a penalty given for a foul which only referee Gustavo Bassi spotted. A little earlier on Saturday there was an enormous shock: Independiente not only won, but won even though it would have hurt Racing if they’d lost. And they say sportsmanship is dead.

Lanús took the lead in El Sur early on, thanks to a seventh minute strike from Eduardo Salvio which deflected past Hilario Navarro thanks to a deflection off his defender, Adrián González. That early boost should have given the leaders the impetus to tear into their visitors, but Lanús singularly failed to demonstrate the quality that’s propelled them to the top of the league, though they did have a couple of chances near half time: Salvio forced Navarro into a good save from a free kick, and Matías Fritzler fizzed a shot just over.

In the second half San Lorenzo regained parity in the 63rd minute through an Emir Faccioli own goal, and that looked like it was going to be that, until with just under quarter-of-an-hour left Gustavo Bassi spotted a foul in the box on the part of a San Lorenzo defender. He did well to see it, because no foul was committed, but José Sand picked himself up and converted the penalty all the same. Lanús return to the top and the ball is now in Vélez Sársfield’s court; they’re four points behind and play Gimnasia de Jujuy on Sunday.

Racing fans will be thanking Daniel Montenegro for Independiente’s return to winning ways after three straight defeats just when they might have least expected it, against Racing’s relegation rivals Rosario Central. Rolfi hit a hat trick starting in the fourteenth minute and completed thanks to two golazos in the second half which make him the leading goalscorer in the torneo, with 12 strike. Emilio Zelaya hit a consolation for Central in stoppage time.

Elsewhere on Saturday Colón got a 3-1 win away to Godoy Cruz thanks to two goals from Esteban ‘Bichi‘ Fuertes and one from Germán Rivarola in the last minute. The hosts’ goal came from Leandro Caruso. On Friday night Newell’s and Arsenal drew 1-1 in El Coloso Del Parque (two early goals, the first from Sergio Sena for the visitors and the equaliser for Newell’s from Mauro Fórmice), and Huracán beat Banfield 2-1, coming from behind after Seba Fernández had put Banfield in front through goals from Mario Bolatti and Patricio Toranzo.

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