The scoreline may not reflect the tie but Lanús cruised into the Copa Sudamericana final on Wednesday evening with a 3-0 win over Vélez Sarsfield.
Leading 1-0 from the first leg, Lanús found themselves on the back foot for large parts against a Vélez side appearing in confident mood of turning things round. Yet a host of missed chances and a red card swung it in favour of the hosts and Lanús took full advantage.
The opening 43 minutes had been played almost entirely in the Lanús half with Vélez pushing for the away goal that would level the tie. Goalkeeper Lautaro Morales had been kept busy and it appeared only a matter of time before the visitors broke the deadlock.
Instead striker Cristian Tarragona, who had missed a penalty in the first leg, was shown a red card for a studs up challenge on Lautaro Acosta and moments later Lanús led, Tomás Belmonte forcing a header over the line. Injury time penalties and VAR decisions had benefitted Vélez en route to the semi-final but their luck had abandoned them at the critical moment.
A man down and in need of two goals Vélez continued to come forward but the game was put beyond doubt on the hour mark. Brian Aguirre did well down the right and when Vélez failed to deal with his low cross Nicolás Orsini was left with the simplest of tap-ins.
In need of an immediate response Lucas Janson’s curling effort came back off the inside of the post to compound Vélez’s frustrations and it was left to Alexander Bernabei to wrap up the win for Lanús.
The 2013 champions will be looking for their third international trophy in Córdoba on January 23rd and on Sataurday will learn whether it will be Defensa y Justicia or Coquimbo Unido in the final.