Racing were in real danger of allowing Copa Libertadores qualification slip away after three defeats in their last four but on Saturday evening Diego Cocca’s side put an end to that run with victory over ten-man San Lorenzo.
The turning point came shortly before half time when Ariel Rojas was shown a straight red card for tripping Santiago Rosales as the Racing midfielder ran clear on goal and within barely a minute of the restart, the home side took advantage, Rosales pouncing on a loose ball in the six-yard box to stab it past Nicolás Navarro.
Despite the numerical disadvantage, San Lorenzo forced an equaliser with Nicolás Blandi slotting into the net but Argentina international Marcos Acuña snatched all three points in front of new manager Jorge Sampaoli.
In San Juan, Sarmiento’s slim hopes of survival took a further hit as San Martín eventually ran out 4-2 winners.
Nicolas Pelaitay and Gustavo Villarruel had twice put the home side ahead only for first a Mauricio Casierra own goal and second, a Brian Fernández strike to pull Sarmiento level.
However, two goals in five minutes by Facundo Barceló and Nicolás Maná gave San Martín the lead that their superiority deserved.