A questionable penalty converted by Thiago Almada earned Vélez Sarsfield their first win of the Copa Liga Profesional.
Patronato were the visitors to Liniers on Monday evening and while being second best for large parts of the game will feel aggrieved at the soft decision for a foul on Juan Lucero shortly after half time that allowed Almada to cooly slot in the only goal.
Vélez themselves were a little unfortunate not to open the scoring in the first half when an offside flag denied defender Emiliano Amor but there was still plenty lacking from Mauricio Pellegrino’s side as they adjust to life after Gabriel Heinze.
Despite that Vélez are well placed in Group 6 ahead of an important clash with Huracán next Saturday. Victory would all but secure a place in the Championship phase while defeat could leave a lot of pressure in the final two fixtures.
Vélez Sarsfield 1 – 0 Patronato
Colón are also closing on a place in the next round after defeating Central Córdoba to go top of Group 2.
A Cristian Bernardi header put El Sabalero in front early and though they were made to wait until the 82nd minute to wrap up the win it was thoroughly deserved.
And when it arrived it did so in spectacular fashion. Veteran Luis Miguel Rodríguez had only been on the pitch for less than ten minutes but when the ball was rolled back to him on the edge of the box, the flea produced an audacious, first-time, outside of the foot lob.
Colón host Defensa y Justicia on Saturday knowing that a win would confirm their place in the Fase Campeonato.