After the excitement of the Copa de la Liga which saw Boca Juniors crowned champions through the play-offs, the Liga Profesional returned for Fecha 1. It included Racing continuing their incredible form and Boca grinding out a win, while reigning Liga Profesional champions River could only draw.
With some eyes on Argentina’s win over Italy in the Finalissima and a five-goal masterclass from Lionel Messi against Estonia, the domestic action was just as thrilling as ever.
Racing back to winning ways
Fernando Gago’s Racing were unbeaten during the Copa de la Liga but eventually lost to Boca in the play-off semi-final on penalties. They put that disappointment behind them and began their Liga Professional campaign with a victory over Huracán.
Globo were down to ten men in the 41st minute as César Ibáñez was shown a second yellow card. With the man advantage Gago’s side took the lead early in the second half as a Tomás Chancalay cross from a free-kick was missed by everyone and ended up in the back of the net.
The 2-0 victory was sealed on the 90th minute as Enzo Copetti’s cross was headed in by Jonathan Gómez, preceded by some calamitous defending by Huracán.
It was a dominant victory for La Academia who had 63% possession. They should have put the game to bed earlier with their 21 shots with 9 on target.
Copa de la Liga Champions pick up where they left off
The Copa de la Liga Champions started the Liga Profesional with a victory over Arsenal Sarandi.
Agustín Sández headed in from a Sebastian Villa free-kick to give Boca the lead on the 15th minute. Villa soon doubled their advantage with a fantastic low curling finessed shot past Alejandro Medina.
No look del Changuito Zeballos, definición espectacular de Sebastián Villa. Boca gana, merecidamente, 2-0. pic.twitter.com/YQl0Gz9k3g
— Tomiconcina🎙 (@Tomiconcina1) June 5, 2022
Arsenal halved their deficit when Cristian Colmán cutback was fired in by Mauro Pittón on the 24th minute.
The second half was goalless and Boca claimed a 2-1 victory at La Bombonera. Los Xeneizes could have won more convincingly if they had been more clinical. They had 17 shots with 8 on target.
In a week in which Boca legend Carlos Tevez retired, his former club could have done with him up front to put away some of their chances. Nevertheless, it was a good start for Sebastián Battaglia’s side.
Defending Champions held by Defensa
River Plate were without Julián Álvarez and Franco Armani, who were on national team duty in Pamplona, Spain.
Álvarez, in particular, was clearly missed, as Los Millonarios played out a 0-0 draw with Defensa y Justicia at the Norberto Tomaghello Stadium.
Defensa had the better of the chances with 5 shots on target. Ezequiel Centurión, who was standing in for Armani in goal made a some fine saves to keep out Halcón out.
Both sides had 9 shots on goal and River were lacking the clinical edge of Álvarez and only managed 2 efforts on target. It doesn’t bode well for their attacking options, with Álvarez due to join up with Manchester City shortly.
Tigre back to winning ways
Tigre, who lost in the final of the Copa de la Liga to Boca Juniors, began their Liga Profesional campaign with a victory over Unión de Santa Fe.
Unión took the lead on the 57th minute as Jonathan Álvez turned in Mauro Luna Diale’s cross. Facundo Colidio equalised with a beautiful effort from outside the box into the top corner.
Colidio hizo el mejor gol de la fecha. 🔥🎯 pic.twitter.com/VDwtiJmFYQ
— LA VOZ DEL FÚTBOL (@lavozdelfutbol2) June 5, 2022
Colidio then set up Tigre’s winner after his run was finished off by Diego Sosa to claim a 2-1 victory.
Despite the win Diego Martínez’s side in fact had marginally less possession with 47% and less shots with 10 to Unión’s 13. But they were more clinical and the brilliance of Colidio got them over the line.
Return of the ‘Zárate kid’
Mauro Zárate is back in Argentine football with Platense following a spell playing in Brazil. The former Boca, Vélez and West Ham man made an instant impact scoring the winner against Godoy Cruz on his debut.
— Club Atlético Platense (@caplatense) June 5, 2022
The match was tied at 1-1 when Zárate was introduced as a substitute in the 60th minute. Then Platense were awarded a penalty in the 84th minute. Zárate coolly converted into the bottom corner to give his new side a 2-1 victory.