Barely has the dust settled from the tenth round, so full of action that the superclásico was all but forgotten about by anyone reasonable, than the next round of matches is starting. It’s a big round for both Avellaneda clubs: Newell’s host Racing on Tuesday afternoon – for some reason Racing’s new manager, Lothar Matthäus (yes, really) isn’t arriving in the country until Wednesday, but more about that below – whilst leaders Colón visit Independiente on Wednesday in the first match to be played in the new Doble Visera. Estudiantes travel to Mendoza, Banfield travel to La Plata, and policemen the length and breadth of Buenos Aires will be packing their rubber bullets and heading for La Bombonera on Thursday. It’s the fixture the barras have been waiting for: Boca Juniors vs Chacarita Juniors.
All kick off times are local. Add three hours for Greenwich Mean Time / UCT.
Primera División Torneo Apertura 2009, eleventh round:
Newell’s Old Boys vs Racing Club (Tues, 17:00)
Atlético Tucumán vs Vélez Sársfield (Tues, 19:10)
Godoy Cruz Antonio Tomba vs Estudiantes de La Plata (Tues, 21:15)
Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata vs Banfield (Weds, 15:00)
San Lorenzo de Almagro vs Arsenal Fútbol Club (Weds, 17:10)
Huracán vs Rosario Central (Weds, 19:30)
Independiente vs Colón (Weds, 21:30)
Boca Juniors vs Chacarita Juniors (Thurs, 15:00)
Lanús vs Tigre (Thurs, 17:00)
Argentinos Juniors vs River Plate (Thurs, 21:10)
Matthäus, having denied on Saturday that he’d been in contact with any Argentine clubs, went back on that statement on Sunday and confirmed that he’s agreed in principle to take the manager’s job at Racing. Whether he’s aware that he could do an incredible job and they’ll still be in relegation trouble due to the Promedio is anyone’s guess. But then, it’s Lothar Matthäus – he’s not going to do an incredible job. He’s already turned down the chance to actually watch his new charges on Tuesday, by announcing that he’ll arrive in Buenos Aires on Wednesday. He’s also told the world that if his girlfriend doesn’t settle well in Buenos Aires, he’ll be back off to Europe like a flash.
What a pro. And what a staggeringly good footballing decision on the part of Racing’s board of directors to appoint him. No way they’ve done that in an attempt to try and grab headlines…