There may have been tears after the game from Marcos Senesi as the defender departs for Feyenoord but it was otherwise all smiles at the Nuevo Gasómetro after San Lorenzo chalked up another three points to maintain their lead at the top of the Superliga.
Unión were the visitors to Bajo Flores on Saturday and did enough to highlight San Lorenzo’s lingering vulnerabilities but Juan Antonio Pizzi’s side hold the distinct advantage over Jorge Almirón’s edition last season of being able to find the net.
It took only two minutes on Saturday for recent signings the Romero brothers to combine and set San Lorenzo on their way as Óscar delivered a corner from the left for Ángel to head in unchallenged.
That bright start was almost undone but Gastón Comas spurned a glorious opportunity one-on-one with goalkeeper Nicolás Navarro and soon after Unión’s failure to equalise was punished. A cross from the right found its way to Bruno Pittón and the full-back’s deflected shot made it two. There were no celebrations from Pittón against his former club but Unión must be wondering where his sudden goal rush has come from as the full-back already has three goals in just seven appearances for Los Cuervos.
San Lorenzo’s fragile defence was further highlighted before the break though, Ezequiel Bonifacio running clear to round Navarro and pull a goal back and were it not for a superb save shortly after, Bonifacio could have headed Unión level before the break.
The excitement of the first half tailed off somewhat after the break and as Unión chased the game and frustration boiled over the visitors were reduced to nine men. Damián Martínez was shown a second yellow card for a foul on Gerónimo Poblete and in the same incident Jonathan Bottinelli kicked the ball at the prostrate San Lorenzo midfielder prompting Nicolás Lamolina to brandish a second yellow card.
Two points dropped from five fixtures for San Lorenzo and if River Plate win Sunday’s Superclásico, an early three-point lead at the top of the table.
San Lorenzo 2 – 1 Unión
While San Lorenzo are finding victories easy to come by, Racing Club have made a slow start to their title defence. Eduardo Coudet’s side picked up their first three points of the campaign against Godoy Cruz on Saturday evening but it wasn’t without some degree of controversy.
Racing started brightly and deservedly led just after the half hour mark, a wonderful flowing move that began with goalkeeper Gabriel Arias cut the visitors to ribbons and Darío Cvitanich applied the finishing touch with a powerful shot inside Roberto Ramírez’s near post. However, replays suggested that the veteran striker may have strayed a yard offside when receiving the pass and Godoy Cruz’s sense of injustice was only to grow.
The visitors got themselves back on level terms soon after with Santiago García heading in unchallenged but referee Germán Delfino drew the ire of Godoy Cruz when he awarded the softest of penalties when Cvitanich tumbled in the box. Lisandro López found the net to restore the lead and just before the break, Diego González flicked in a third from a corner.
Despite the frustrations of the visitors, a couple of half chances during the second half and Racing substitute Jonathan Cristaldo being sent off late on, La Academia were good value for the win and Eduardo Coudet will be hoping that his side can now kick on.
Racing Club 3 – 1 Godoy Cruz
Rivals Independiente already have two wins in the league but are also still hoping for their season to really ignite and after a victory over Patronato in the Copa Argentina during the week, Sebastián Beccacece saw his side slump to a 1-0 defeat against the same opponents in Paraná.
A game of few clear chances saw Sebastián Palacios miss a wonderful opportunity and Independiente were ultimately undone by a defensive error by Alexander Barboza. The recent signing ballooned the ball into the air on half way and then failed to prevent Lautaro Comas running clear and thrashing a shot past Martín Campaña.
Beccacece has clearly not yet found his best eleven or even his best system and Independiente is not a place where patience is abundant.
With the win, a third in five games, Patronato climbed clear of the relegation zone and while the Paraná club are looking for another escape, Gimnasia appear increasingly doomed.
Miami-born, 18-year-old Matko Miljevic gave Argentinos Juniors a 1-0 win over Gimnasia thanks to his deflected first half shot and it leaves El Lobo increasingly cut adrift at the foot of the promedio table. To rub salt in the wound 20-year-old Khalil Caraballo came on for his Gimnasia debut and six minutes later was sent off for kicking goalkeeper Lucas Chaves in the head.
The situation saw Hernán Ortiz depart as manager afterwards and with Hernán Crespo out at Banfield, the relegation battle is already taking its casualties with only five rounds of the season gone.