Apertura 2011: Boca edge closer to the title, Lanús win their clásico, and more (video)

This is a later than usual summary, but it is timed nicely to coincide with the launch of the Guardian’s new Sports Network, of which HEGS is proud to be a part. Boca Juniors edged closer to the title with a 0-0 draw away to Vélez Sarsfield – a match I was at. Elsewhere over the weekend, Lanús won the clásico del sur 2-1 to virtually assure 2012 Copa Libertadores qualification, Godoy Cruz beat Estudiantes 3-1 to go almost as close and, down in the Nacional B, River Plate thrashed Gimnasia y Esgrima de Jujuy 4-1 with four goals from Fernando Cavenaghi, which make him River’s top scorer in the last twenty years. All the goals from Saturday afternoon onwards are here, as well as a few thoughts on each match, and all the scores and scorers.

Primera División Torneo Apertura 2011, fourteenth round
Club Atlético All Boys (M. Matos 18, 60) 2 – 2 Club Atlético Independiente (M. Defederico 9; J. Pérez 53)
Asociación Mutual Social y Deportiva Atlético de Rafaela 0 – 0 Club Atlético Belgrano (R. Rodríguez OFF 61)
Club Olimpo (J. Furch 73) 1 – 1 Club Atlético San Lorenzo de Almagro (E. Kalinski 3; J.M. Salgueiro OFF 31)
Club Atlético Tigre (C. Luna 36; N. Carrasco 73) 2 – 1 Club Atlético Colón (I. Moreno y Fabianesi 74)
Club Deportivo Godoy Cruz Antonio Tomba (A. Rojas 4; R. Ramírez 16; A. Cooper 77) 3 – 1 Club Estudiantes de La Plata (J. Curbelo OG 45; L. Benítez OFF 90+3)
Racing Club (G. Moreno 54) 1 – 0 Asociación Atlética Argentinos Juniors
Club Atlético Banfield (P. Goltz OG 6; A. Delfino OFF 90+1) 1 – 2 Club Atlético Lanús (M. Pavone 24; C. Izquierdoz 35)
Club Atlético Unión (J. Barrales 48; E. Bologna 87) 2 – 1 Club Atlético Newell’s Old Boys (H. Villalba OFF 45+1; F. Múñoz OFF 53; M. Tonso 76; G. Ferracutti OFF 85)
Club Atlético Vélez Sarsfield 0 – 0 Club Atlético Boca Juniors
Arsenal Fútbol Club (E. Zelaya 3; J.P. Caffa 51) 2 – 0 Club Atlético San Martín de San Juan (M. Núñez OFF 68)

Tigre 2 – 1 Colón

Tigre’s win lifts them to fifth in the Apertura table, and is all the more impressive since it’s Colón’s first away defeat of the season; the santafecinos have been far more impressive away than at home for some time now. In the relegation table, though, they’re still in deep trouble, fully eleven points adrift of San Lorenzo, who are the lowest-placed side in a ‘safe’ position for the moment.

Godoy Cruz 3 – 1 Estudiantes

Godoy Cruz took a huge step towards next year’s Libertadores with this win; it means they need just a point from their next match to join Vélez Sarsfield, Boca Juniors and Arsenal in the continent’s main club tournament.

Racing 1 – 0 Argentinos

After five straight draws, Racing finally won again thanks to a header from playmaker Gio Moreno which didn’t seem to be entirely deliberate (by which I mean, I don’t think it was intended as an attempt on goal). The win puts them second, eight points adrift of Boca, with a visit to La Bombonera coming up next after the international break.

Banfield 1 – 2 Lanús

Lanús got their first clásico win in two years in spite of falling behind early on; after Paolo Goltz’s early own goal had put Ricardo La Volpe’s strugglers into the lead, Mariano Pavone and Carlos Izquierdoz made sure Banfield suffered yet another defeat in what’s becoming a campaign to forget for El Taladro. Lanús have climbed back up to third (they’re a point behind Racing), whilst Banfield are rock bottom of the Apertura.

Unión 2 – 1 Newell’s

Newell’s totally lost control and finished this match reduced to eight men. Unión won with a penalty by goalkeeper Enrique Bologna very late on, but the big talking point was the horrific leg break suffered by Marcelo Sarmiento of Unión after a hideous challenge from Fabián Múñoz, who deservedly became Newell’s second player to be sent off. The goals are in the first video below and that tackle, for the strong of stomach, is in the second (because apparently posting a video to YouTube with complete highlights of a game is a really silly idea in Argentina…).

I’m really not joking about this one; don’t watch the video below if you’re eating, or at all squeamish. It’s bloody horrible.

Vélez 0 – 0 Boca

The champions and the team who look certain to win this title were very evenly matched in Liniers, though the first half was better than the second. Vélez did very well considering they’ve more than half an eye on the Copa Sudamericana, and can be pleased with their efforts in spite of the fact that neither side really had many chances. The clearest was a penalty given to Boca during the first half for a foul on Sergio Araujo, which Rolando Schiavi had saved by Vélez’s stand-in goalkeeper Germán Montoya (their first choice, Marcelo Barovero, was suspended).

Arsenal 2 – 0 San Martín

Arsenal’s win on Monday night puts San Martín back on the bottom of the Promedio relegation table, and leaves Arsenal still lower mid-table in the Apertura. It had little consequence otherwise, but this video is worth watching if only for the way in which Emilio Zelaya dispatches the first goal.

Nacional B 2011-12, thirteenth round

Gimnasia y Esgrima de Jujuy 1 – 2 River Plate

Fernando Cavenaghi’s four goals in this match lift him above Ariel Ortega as River Plate’s top scorer in the last twenty years, though his opener shouldn’t have been scored; both he and fellow River forward Alejandro Domínguez said after the game that the penalty shouldn’t have been given. Referee Saúl Laverni was unrepentant the next day though, insisting, ‘referees can make mistakes like anyone else… but I didn’t make a mistake. It was a penalty.’

You can follow the latest news from the selección and Argentina’s foreign legion of players, as well as the domestic championship, River Plate’s first second division campaign in over a century and the ever entertaining/tragic/infuriating capers of Julio Grondona & chums direct from Buenos Aires with HEGS on Twitter. If you’ve not signed up yet you can do so here. You can also join the official HEGS Facebook group, to keep up to date with the latest posts on the blog and discuss things with other fans. You’ll find it here. And remember to bookmark Hand Of Pod, our Argentine football podcast, or if you prefer you can subscribe to it on iTunes here.

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