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Monday games left only two teams fighting for the championship : Velez and Lanus.
Velez game was very difficult and even though they had the ball all the time during the 1st half, they barely had any chances to score and Godoy Cruz was holding without much problems.
When the 2nd half started it was the visitors who had the best chances to score and they missed two huge ones, saved by Velez's goalkeeper Marcelo Barovero, and when it looked like Velez couldn't find a way to score, striker Juan Manuel Martinez, one of the best players in this league, scored an amazing goal.
The 1-0 hurt Godoy Cruz who couldn't react and in the last minute of the game David Ramirez put the 2-0. The 2 goals difference was probably too much, but Velez was overall a fair winner in a very balanced game.
Also balanced was the game of Lanus visiting Independiente. The visitors got the lead in the 1st half through a great free kick by Diego Valeri (another best player of this league) and they could have finished it earlier but they missed a penalty. When the 0-2 came on a counter attack it looked like it was game over, but Independiente scored with a header off a corner kick only a few minutes later and pushed in the last minutes but couldn't get the draw.
Velez is still the leader with 33 points, followed by Lanus with 32 and Godoy Cruz was left behind as they have only 28 points with 2 rounds left.
Next week Velez will visit the desperate Huracan (for now behind closed doors because of Huracan's suspension) and Lanus will host Argentinos Juniors, while in the last round Velez will play at home vs Racing and Lanus will visit ... River !
Almost every TV show about football and in meetings between football fans the talk is much more about the relegation/promotion playoffs than who will win the championship and after Sunday's results this won't change.
Gimnasia's draw vs Racing combined with the unexpected but deserved Huracan win changed things in the last places of the Averages table because now it's Gimnasia who is in a direct relegation place and Huracan is only 1 point above them in a promotion playoff !!
Things might change again next week because Huracan visits the worst rival they could have now, Velez, while Gimnasia will visit All Boys, who only needs 1 more point to be 100% safe.
The other promotion playoff place is for Olimpo now, but River couldn't take advantage of Tigre's defeat and only drew vs Colon and things are still really tight down there.
Round 17 results :
3/6 — Arsenal F.C. 2 – 0 Olimpo de Bahía Blanca
4/6 — Banfield 3 – 1 All Boys
4/6 — Newell’s Old Boys vs San LorenzoPostergado por incidentes
5/6 — Quilmes A.C. 2 – 2 Boca Juniors
5/6 — Gimnasia y Esgrima de La Plata 0 – 0 Racing Club
5/6 — Huracán 3 – 2 Tigre
5/6 — River Plate 1 – 1 Colón de Santa Fe
6/6 — Argentinos Juniors 0 – 0 Estudiantes de La Plata
6/6 — Vélez Sarsfield 2 – 0 Godoy Cruz Antonio Tomba
6/6 — Independiente 1 – 2 Lanús
Round 18 will be amazing as it will feature 10 games where in all of them there are teams fighting for something : championship, relegation/promotion or Copa Sudamericana qualification !!
For now this will be the schedule, but there are big chances that it will be changed so probably Velez and Lanus play at the same time :
Friday June 10
21.10--Olimpo de Bahía Blanca-Newell`s Old Boys
Saturday June 11
14.00--Colón de Santa Fe-Arsenal F.C.
16.10--San Lorenzo-Quilmes A.C.
18.20--All Boys-Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata
Sunday June 12
16.00--Estudiantes de La Plata-River Plate
Monday June 13
20.10--Racing Club-Godoy Cruz Antonio Tomba
Averages Table (http://www.argentinapreviews.com/2010/05/how-are-relegations-decided.html) :
Copa Sudamerica 2011 table ( Top 6 qualify to Copa Sudamericana 2011 + Independiente because they are Sudamericana 2010 champion) :
* Tables taken from "La Redó" (www.la-redo.com.ar)