Lanús bounced back from consecutive defeats to claim the local bragging rights over rivals, Banfield in a fiery clash which yielded four red cards but was deservedly won by Guillermo Barros Schelotto’s side 2-1. It was the home side who came into the clásico as one of the form teams in the Primera and four straight wins had rocketed them up the table but any notion that this would carry into this match quickly dissipated.
With twenty-four minutes on the clock, Lautaro Acosta dashed in behind Sergio Vittor and when the defender grabbed his shoulder and pulled him to the floor there was little Patricio Loustau could do but point to the spot and brandish a red card. Nicolás Aguirre smashed in the resulting penalty and Lanús were firmly in the driving seat.
The first half drama did not end there and Loustau pulled out two further red cards before the break. As Banfield packed the Lanús six-yard box ready for a free-kick, the referee spotted Óscar Benítez throw an elbow and promptly sent off the Lanús midfielder but with the help of his assistant he was able to spot just why Benítez had reacted. Banfield striker, Ricardo Noir had aimed a sly kick and so he too was given his marching orders.
With a man advantage spaces opened up and just after the hour mark Lucas Melano slotted in a second. It was difficult to see a way back for Matías Almeyda’s side but minutes later the numbers were evened up again. Lautaro Acosta caught Nicolás Bertolo late and saw a second yellow much to the annoyance of his teammates and when Mauricio Asenjo fired a goal back with twenty minutes still to go there was a feeling that Banfield might pull off a comeback.
However, Lanús held on to claim the clásico and moved up to eighth, just a point behind Banfield. Winning the clásico is of course important but Lanús must now seek some consistency.
In Santa Fe, Unión lost for only the second time in a match that was dominated by the goalkeepers. Visiting Sarmiento looked to be leaving with a point but a fumble by Nereo Fernández allowed Sebastián Luna to thump in the game’s only goal.
Earlier in Bahía Blanca, Olimpo and Defensa y Justicia played out a goalless draw that leaves the home side still in search of a first win of the season.