The Copa Sudamericana last 16 got underway on Tuesday evening with the all-Argentine clash between Defensa y Justicia and Banfield but with one side seemingly content to leave with a draw, there was little excitement in Florencio Varela.
Julio César Falcioni barking his instructions through a megaphone from the dugout was about as interesting as Banfield’s performance got and with the visitors well organised and defending in numbers, Defensa y Justicia couldn’t find the important breakthrough.
Despite losing Jonás Gutiérrez to what appears to be a serious knee injury in the opening ten minutes, Defensa y Justicia remained the better side throughout.
Restricted primarily to long range efforts during the first half after the break, El Halcón had a couple of clearer sights at goal. Fabián Bordagaray headed over a great opportunity and Alexander Barboza stung Mauricio Arboleda’s hands with a free kick from the edge of the box but the goal wouldn’t come.
Banfield will be content with the result considering their lack of ambition and when the two sides meet again in the Estadio Florencio Sola next month, El Taladro will feel far more confident.