Superliga Friday and washout Saturday highlights: River thrash Lanús; Racing beat Argentinos to stay top

There were two Superliga games on Friday and just one on Saturday, due to a thunderstorm sweeping over Greater Buenos Aires in the early hours of Saturday which caused San Lorenzo v Atlético Tucumán and Estudiantes (who are playing home games in Quilmes at the moment) v Newell’s Old Boys to be called off. The postponement of Rosario Central v San Martín de San Juan had already been agreed a few days ago at Central’s request, to simplify security measures around the club’s elections on Sunday.

In the first of the matches that did go ahead, Independiente – playing a heavily rotated side ahead of Tuesday night’s Copa Libertadores quarter-final second leg against River – hosted Tigre on Friday night and played out a 0-0 draw which both sides might feel they should have won, given the chances passed up. The clearest of those was a first half penalty which saw Tigre goalkeeper Augusto Batalla deny Gonzalo Verón.

Shortly afterwards, River’s own second string visited Lanús, and were probably feeling happy enough to go in level at half time, after a sloppy first half performance saw them fall behind to a Leandro Maciel strike, and pull back level thanks to a close-range finish from Ignacio Scocco. In the second half, River improved dramatically, grabbing a fortunate own goal from Lanús goalkeeper Matías Ibáñez to take the lead before solidifying it with a further two goals in the next eleven minutes – a header from Luciano Lollo and wonderful team move finished off by Nicolás De La Cruz – before Exequiel Palacios added a fifth with twenty minutes to go.

In the only game that ended up taking place on Saturday, Argentinos Juniors hosted league leaders Racing, and it was the visitors who won to stretch their lead to five points (their closest pursuers, Atlético Tucumán, having been among the teams who saw a game called off earlier in the day). Argentinos put in a good shift early on, but were undone when throwing too many men forward at a corner, with Jonathan Cristaldo capitalising on goalkeeper Lucas Chaves’ uncertainty to give Racing the lead. Five minutes into the second half, Matías Romero brought down Guillermo Fernández in the box, and Lisandro López converted the penalty to give Racing a lead they never subsequently looked like relinquishing.

Independiente 0-0 Tigre

Lanús 1-5 River Plate

Argentinos Juniors 0-2 Racing


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