The big finale of the 2009 Torneo Clausura has seen its first act played out with a late winner for visitors Lanús in Tucumán and a victory for the hosts in La Plata which see Gimnasia La Plata secure a relegation playoff spot ahead of San Martín de Tucumán, who go straight down to B Nacional. Two goals from Sebastián Romero saw Gimnasia over the line, whilst in Tucumán Lanús won 3-2, with José Sand cementing his place as goleador for the second short championship in a row.
The result between San Martín and Lanús was made academic by Gimnasia La Plata’s easy victory over their already-relegated namesakes from Jujuy. Sebastián Romero got things going early on with a near post header from a corner in the fourth minute which left visiting goalkeeper Nereo Fernández punching the air. Romero doubled his lead in the 68th minute, and at no point did the visitors look like threatening – throughout the match they demonstrated exactly why they were relegated weeks ago.
In Tucumán, not that it eventually mattered anyway, things didn’t start well for San Martín. José Sand scored first for Lanús from the penalty spot – referee Javier Collado having correctly spotted a foul on Diego Lagos by Raúl Saavedra, but incorrectly deciding it took place inside the box – and El Granate comfortably held out until half time. In the second half, Daniel Vega gave San Martín hope with an equaliser in the 52nd minute but Sand, in the 63rd, scored his thirteenth goal of the Clausura to put Lanús back into the lead. Jorge Serrano’s 72nd minute equaliser looked for a long time like it had claimed a consolatory point for San Martín on their way down, but in the 86th minute Lagos denied them even that, and it finished 3-2 to the visitors.
San Martín are relegated direct along with Gimnasia de Jujuy, then, whilst Gimnasia La Plata will play the Promoción against Atlético Rafaela, the first leg of which will be during the week. Attention now switches to Liniers, where Vélez take on Huracán for the title.