Whether he is still at the club in a week or so remains to be seen but Franco Soldano showed just how valuable he is to Unión once again with the only goal in El Tatengue’s opening weekend victory over Aldosivi.
The newly promoted club looked fairly content to take only a point and perhaps with good reason given Unión’s formidable home record that saw them go unbeaten at the Estadio 15 de Abril last season.
Aldosivi’s tactic looked like it could work with Diego Zabala and Soldano both forcing goalkeeper Luciano Pocrnjic into saves but failing to find the net until the 78th minute when Soldano struck. A free kick into the penalty area found the in-demand striker and his header bounced under Pocrnjic.
Vélez and a host of European clubs have all bid for Soldano in this window and the 23-year-old is said to be waiting on a move but there is no doubt that Unión will struggle in his absence.
Unión 1 – 0 Aldosivi
A little earlier in La Plata and Pedro Troglio’s return to Gimnasia as manager was given an immediate boost with El Lobo securing a narrow victory over Argentinos Juniors.
And the home side made a rapid start as the game’s only goal came after only a minute. New signing Víctor Ayala’s header may not have even been going on target but defender Mauro Maidana stuck out a leg and diverted the ball past Lucas Chaves.
Striker Raúl Bobadilla snatched a good chance to bring Argentinos Juniors level but in general Los Bichos’ attack looked short of practice. With so much change and the only remaining forward from last season Damián Batallini forced off injured, Alfredo Berti’s side lacked fluency.
Gimnasia 1 – 0 Argentinos Juniors
And the remaining Saturday fixtures failed to deliver a great deal. Patronato will perhaps feel a little aggrieved at two strong penalty claims waved away that allowed Colón to leave with a point after a goalless draw.
While in the early season relegation six-pointer it ended all square between Belgrano and San Martín de San Juan in Córdoba. That is not to say there weren’t chances but neither side could apply the finishing touch.