June 19, 2013
Arsenal lift first Argentine football title
Soccer - Clausura tournament
Arsenal de Sarandí won the Argentine title for the first time in their history, beating Belgrano 1-0 in the last round of the Clausura. Banfield joined Olimpo in being directly relegated, while San Lorenzo and San Martín will contest a playoff against teams from the National B Division.
Arsenal won their first Argentine league championship yesterday after beating Belgrano 1-0 at home on the final day of the Clausura championship.
The modest club from the suburb of Sarandí, founded in 1957 by present Argentine Football Association president Julio Grondona and his brother, finished the 19-match championship with 38 points, two more than their closest challengers Tigre, who were held 2-2 at home by Independiente.
Title holders Boca Juniors, winners of the Apertura in the first half of the season, finished five points adrift along with All Boys, who beat them 3-1.
Central defender Lisandro López scored the winning goal for Arsenal midway through the first half. Belgrano had two players sent off, defenders Luciano Lollo in the 56th minute and Claudio Pérez in added time.
Tigre, who began the day equal on points with Arsenal at the top, went ahead in the 20th minute with striker Carlos Luna’s 12th goal confirming him as the tournament’s top scorer.
However, a brace from playmaker Patricio Rodríguez early in the second half put Independiente ahead before a late equalizer by Diego Morales with a penalty after the visitors’ Osmar Ferreyra had been sent off.
Tigre’s point was enough to save them from a playoff with a team from the National B Division for their top flight survival.
Banfield, who won the Apertura title two and a half years ago, were relegated after a 3-0 home defeat by Colón. The match was abandoned seven minutes from time when angry Banfield fans threw objects on to the pitch.
Colón’s 39-year-old striker Esteban Fuertes marked the last match of his career with two goals for a championship tally of seven.
San Lorenzo’s 3-1 home win over San Martín with two goals from their Uruguayan striker Carlos Bueno put them into a promotion-relegation playoff with Instituto, who finished third in the National B Division.
Although San Lorenzo finished in 12th place in the Clausura standings, they finished in the bottom four of the relegation standings.
San Martín, who had midfielder Mauro Bogado sent off after half an hour, also go into a playoff with former first division champions Rosario Central, the fourth-placed team in the National B.
Atlético Rafaela and Unión will stay in the First Division for at least another year after the former beat Godoy Cruz 3-1 and the team from Santa Fe drew 2-2 with Estudiantes de La Plata.
Results & standings
19th ROUND RESULTS — On Friday: Olimpo 0 Argentinos 0; Newell’s 0 Lanús 0. On Saturday: Racing 1 Vélez 2. On Sunday: San Lorenzo 3 San Martín (SJ) 1; Unión 2 Estudiantes 2; All Boys 3 Boca 1; Banfield 0 Colón 3; Godoy Cruz 1 Rafaela 3; Tigre 2 Independiente 2; Arsenal 1 Belgrano 0.
PLAYOFFS — On Thursday: Rosario Central v San Martín; Instituto v San Lorenzo. On Sunday: San Martín v Rosario Central; San Lorenzo v Instituto.
LEADING GOALSCORERS: 12 — C. Luna (Tigre); 8 — G. Caprari (San Martín); 7 — E. Gigliotti (San Lorenzo), D. Gandín (Atl. Rafaela), E. Farías (Independiente), M. Pavone (Lanús), E. Fuertes (Colón).
BOTTOM RELEGATION AVERAGES: San Martín (SJ) 1.263; San Lorenzo 1.254; Banfield 1.245; Olimpo 1.013.