“For a lot of people a 4-4 draw could have been fun but I didn’t like it,” was Hernán Crespo’s frustrated response to watching his Banfield side throw away several leads in what was a crazy encounter with Tigre in Victoria.
When Jesús Dátolo fired Banfield two goals ahead after only 22 minutes, Crespo would have been excused for thinking that his first victory as manager was within grasp. Tigre’s defending was virtually non-existent and goalkeeper Gonzalo Marinelli, first palming the ball into danger to allow Agustín Fontana to tap in an opener and then bringing down Reinaldo Lenis for Dátolo’s penalty, appeared to be willing to gift the visitors the points.
Banfield though were in equally charitable mood and Federico González firing a goal back sparked an incredible back and forth. Walter Montillo skipped through El Taladro’s porous backline to slot in the equaliser and then a soft penalty allowed Lucas Janson to put Tigre in front.
The home side were also unable to hold the lead and before half time another penalty saw Dátolo score his second of the evening to level things up.
If half time was supposed to be a moment to regroup and find some sense of calm, it didn’t work as Fontana acrobatically volleyed Banfield back in front inside the first minute only for González to immediately slice through the centre of the visiting defence to make it 4-4.
Just how many goals these two teams would score was the question and surprisingly it stopped there. Even when Ignacio Canuto was shown a red card for hauling down Julián Carranza when through on goal, the numerical advantage couldn’t help find a winner.
Tigre 4 – 4 Banfield
While Tigre battle against relegation, there was a game in Parque Patricios with greater implications in the race for Copa Libertadores qualification. Huracán hosted Vélez Sarsfield and just like the point in Victoria didn’t help El Matador, the two top-four chasing sides will likely lose ground this weekend after their draw.
Brian Cufre had given Vélez a first half lead, smashing in from close range after good work down the left by Matías Vargas but a penalty shortly after half time allowed Lucas Gamba to slot in an equaliser.
Lucas Robertone, who had struck the post during the first half, was sent off late, given a second yellow card for handball and neither side could snatch all three points.
Huracán 1 – 1 Vélez Sarsfield
Meanwhile in the Fortaleza, Lanús made it four consecutive wins with victory over struggling Gimnasia.
José Sand had already seen one goal disallowed for half time when a contentious penalty presented the veteran striker with a chance to break the deadlock. Once in front Lanús took control and before half time, Alexis Martín Arias’ failure to hold Lautaro Acosta’s shot allowed Leonel Di Plácido to fire in the rebound.
Gimnasia threatened after the break but couldn’t pull a goal back and while El Lobo remain in relegation danger, Lanús are doing a good job of clawing their way to safety.