Fecha 2 and 3 of the Copa de la Liga saw a series of super events which included a hat-trick from ‘Spider-Man’ and an Arsenal ‘Invincible’ in the stands!
Old Boys well beaten by Juniors
While Lionel Messi (despite his missed penalty) was helping PSG to a victory over Real Madrid in the Champions League; his youth team Newell’s Old Boys had a very bad day at the office, suffering a 3-0 defeat at the hands of Argentinos Juniors.
Argentinos took the lead on the 10th minute as Newell’s midfielder Nico Castro gave the ball away to Gabriel Ávalos who fired his shot from outside the box into the bottom corner. A finish which former Arsenal midfielder Robert Pires – who was in attendance – would have been proud of.
— Argentinos Juniors (@AAAJoficial) February 20, 2022
Newell’s giving the ball away became a theme of the game, with Javier Sanguinetti’s side having a passing accuracy of just 66% compared to Argentinos’ 81%.
On the 63rd minute El Bicho’s lead doubled as Matías Alejandro Galarza slotted the ball past Iván Arboleda.
Ávalos got his second goal of the day making it 3-0 on the 71st minute with a finessed strike into the top corner. This sealed two wins from two for Gabriel Milito’s side.
River flowing again
Having lost their opening game of the season to Unión, River Plate responded emphatically with a victory over Patronato.
El Patrón took the lead in the 6th minute as Gabriel Gudiño’s cross was deflected by Paulo Díaz over his goalkeeper Franco Armani and into the net. Not the stylish start River wanted.
The kid River fans call ‘the spider’, Julián Álvarez, started to show who was boss, levelling the score on the 21st minute as he poked his header past Matías Mansilla. 10 minutes later Álvarez put his side in front with a powerful strike from a tight angle. The Manchester City loanee then completed his hat-trick on the 50th minute showing great composure as he tucked his shot past Mansilla.
Julian Alvarez on the scoresheet again. His 2nd goal tonight pic.twitter.com/e7wW5XvaDI
— ⚡️🇧🇼 (@Priceless_Silva) February 17, 2022
Mansilla’s day then went from bad to worse as he brought down substitute Juan Fernando Quintero in the box. Quintero struck his penalty into the bottom corner to complete the 4-1 rout. Los Millonarios recorded an impressive 73% possession in the process.
Nothing between Racing and Defensa
Both Racing Club and Defensa y Justica had subdued opening games. However, they were both much improved and shared the points when they met at the Norberto Tomaghello Stadium.
The first half saw Fernando Gago’s side take the lead on the 28th minute as Edwin Cardona made no mistake from the penalty spot. Their lead was then doubled on the 39th minute as Gabriel Hauche squeezed his shot past Ezequiel Unsain in the Defensa goal.
Sebastián Beccacece’s side responded quickly with Miguel Merentiel getting one back with a powerful strike on the 41st minute. Francisco Pizzini levelled the score in the second half to share the points at 2-2.
¡Final del partido!
— Defensa y Justicia (Seguí cuidándote😷) (@ClubDefensayJus) February 18, 2022
Despite la Academia squandering a two goal advantage, a draw was a fair result and the stats reflected this with Defensa having 49% possession to Racing’s 51%; 398 passes to their opponent’s 402 and 79% pass accuracy to their 78%.
Top marks for the Students
Having edged out Huracán 3-2 in matchday 2, Estudiantes made it three on the trot with a victory over Lanús. Ricardo Zielinski’s side took the lead from on the 37th minute when Mauro Boselli converted from the penalty spot. Leandro Diaz came off the bench to double their lead in the 73rd minute with a stunning turn and finish off the inside of the post.
Granate defender Matías Pérez deflected the ball in from a corner on the 86th minute but Los Pincharratas managed to hang on to win 2-1. The result put Estudiantes top of Group B with a perfect nine points from three games. They are the only team in the Copa de la Liga to achieve this so far this season with just Argentinos Juniors in Group A able to match them if they beat Racing on Wednesday.
Old Boys getting left behind
Two second half goals for River Plate saw them claim their second successive victory while inflicting two defeats in a row for Newell’s.
Los Millonarios took the lead on the 72nd minute after a poor clearance by La Lepra goalkeeper
Iván Arboleda went straight to Juan Fernando Quintero who guided the ball first time into the empty net.
The victory was then sealed when Robert Rojas fired the ball through Arboleda on the 75th minute. Another mistake by the keeper. However, Newell’s fans could not just blame the man between the sticks as the stats reflected another poor performance for their side that had just 39% of possession.