The Clásico Santafesino hasn’t exactly been a thriller in recent years and Sunday’s meeting was no different but Unión were able to see off Colón at the Estadio 15 de Abril to send supporters home happy.
A game of few clear chances was ultimately decided by one defensive lapse and a smart finish. Following a goalless first half in which neither side had really forced a save, Unión found a breakthrough. Nelson Acevedo’s through-ball wasn’t going to reach its intended target until Gonzalo Escobar stuck out a boot and flicked it in behind where Nicolás Mazzola was able to dink it over Leonardo Burián.
Despite reaching the Copa Sudamericana final, Colón have only won three times this season in the league and they pushed forward to try and salvage something.
For a moment Wilson Morelo thought he had slid in an equaliser only for an offside flag to deny the Colombian and with that Unión were able to hold on in relative comfort.
Unión 1 – 0 Colón
Sunday’s early kick off was also decided by relatively fine margins as Vélez Sarsfield defeated Independiente in Liniers.
There was little between the two sides in the early exchanges until a smart Vélez counter released Lucas Janson. One-on-one with full-back Fabricio Bustos, the forward cut inside onto his right and while his shot was blocked by Alan Franco it fell perfectly for Maxi Romero to tap into an empty net from six yards.
Independiente lacked firepower without a recognised central striker and the game changing moment was when Pablo Pérez squandered a chance through on goal. Goalkeeper Lucas Hoyos saved the midfielder’s first attempt and the outstanding Lautaro Gianetti scrambled the ball away from close to the goal line as Pérez tried to follow up.
The miss proved costly for El Rojo as minutes later, substitute Thiago Almada cut inside and struck a laser-like shot inside the far post to seal the win.
Vélez now up to fourth after their slow start while Sebastián Beccacece is back under pressure at Independiente, his future increasingly appearing to hinge on the Copa Argentina tie against Lanús.
Vélez Sarsfield 2 – 0 Independiente
Meanwhile in Lanús, Rosario Central managed to extend their unbeaten run after picking up a seventh consecutive draw.
José Sand smashed Lanús in front shortly after half time, a club record equalling 120th goal for the 39-year-old, but it wasn’t quite enough to inflict a first defeat of the season on Central.
The worrying sight of defender Diego Novaretti knocked unconscious at a set-piece was still in mind when another Central free-kick was swung into the box and Matias Caruzzo headed the visitors level.
A tetchy end to the game saw Lanús have a penalty appeal waved away and the full time whistle brought protests with referee Diego Abal but Central had done it again. A point that keeps them unbeaten but still in the thick of the relegation battle.