Tuesday, May 20, 2014

River is the champion of Final 2014 !!!

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They were probably not the best team for a big part of the tournament, but it can't be argued that they were the best in the final sprint and the 5-0 in the last game vs Quilmes proves it.
There were many factors, a not so tough schedule in the final rounds was probably one of them, but it can't be used as an excuse because the teams that finished behind them had similar chances and they wasted them.

They were extremely strong at home, getting 27 of the 37 points at the "Monumental", where they won 9 out of 10 games (only lost 1-2 vs Godoy Cruz back in the 3rd round) and had some strong and solid players like their "colombian trio"of Eder Alvarez Balanta, Carlos Carbonero and Teofilo Gutierrez.

The highest moment of their semester was in the 2-1 win in the Superclasico at Boca with a very late goal. Maybe that's where they realized that winning the championship was possible.

35th local title for River, first since 2008 and most in the country, and a redemption moment for them after the infamous 2011 relegation to 2nd division.

This championship gives them a place in Copa Libertadores 2015, joined for now by Velez that finished at the top of the season table with their 3-2 win at San Lorenzo on Monday night.

The football season also has already 2 relegated teams; All Boys and Argentinos Juniors, that will be joined by a 3rd team, the loser of the playoff game between Colon and Atletico Rafaela (they finished tied at the 18th place of the Averages table) that will be played next Saturday.

There will be another game on that same day to close the season, a "Superfinal" as called by AFA, between River and the other champion of this season, San Lorenzo, winner of Inicial 2013.
The winner of that game gets a place in Copa Sudamericana 2014 that will start in mid August.
The other Argentine teams in this competition will be: Boca, Estudiantes, Gimnasia, Rosario Central, Godoy Cruz, and Lanus as the title defenders because they won the 2013 edition.

The best moments of the Final 2014 champion:

Final Standings:

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Final 2014 - Round 18 - Two for the money

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Only two rounds left in yet another entertaining season that is coming to an end so, I'll try to make a short summary of what's left at the top of the standings and at the bottom of the averages table.

We also have the Copa Sudamericana teams...but honestly, I would have to write 200 lines to explain it so I will just say that: Gimnasia, Estudiantes and Boca are already in, plus Lanus will play it because they won the last edition. 
There are 3 places left that will go to two more teams of the season table (for now Godoy Cruz and River) plus the winner of the "Superfinal" that will be played at the end of May between San Lorenzo (champion of Inicial 2013) and the champion of Final 2014.

Gimnasia and River are tied with 31 pts, followed by Estudiantes and Godoy Cruz with 29 pts. San Lorenzo, Colon and Lanus have 27 but I can't consider them as candidates when they are 4 points behind with only 6 left in play, so we have 4 teams going for the championship.

Remember: goals difference DOES NOT matter. If two teams finished tied in points at the top there will be a game played in neutral ground, and it's 3+ teams tied the champion will be decided according to the games played between them in the tournament.

What's left for them:
Gimnasia: Quilmes (A), Boca (H)
River: Argentinos Jrs (A), Quilmes (H)
Estudiantes: San Lorenzo (H), Tigre (A)
Godoy Cruz: Olimpo (A), Racing (H)

It's obvious that River has the easiest schedule, but...if Gimnasia wins at Quilmes, I REAAALLY don't think Boca will try to take points from them and give River the championship. I know it's dangerous to talk about potentially fixed stuff, but that's one of the things that I can't even imagine.
But let's not get ahead of things, first we need to see what happens this next weekend. 


All Boys and Argentinos Jrs are gone, one spot left for 5 candidates (or 6 if we include Olimpo but they are 99% safe):

Tigre 1.267 (142 pts / 112 games)
Godoy Cruz 1.250 (140/112)
Quilmes 1.243 (92/74)
Colon 1.241 (139/112)
Rafaela 1.232 (138/112)

Tigre is almost safe, they are 4 points ahead of Rafaela and they meet this weekend so with a draw they will stay in 1st division.
There is countless combinations between the other 4 teams, but Rafaela is clearly the team in the bigger danger right now, and if they lose and the others win, they could be relegated this very same weekend.
Round 18 will begin on Friday...and I guess I don't need to tell you what games are the most important ones, you will easily figure it out yourself ;)

Friday May 918.00-- Olimpo (B. Blanca)-Godoy Cruz

Saturday May 10
15.00-- At. de Rafaela-Tigre
17.00-- Estudiantes de L.P.-San Lorenzo
17.10-- N.O. Boys-All Boys
19.20-- Vélez Sarsfield-Colón
20.30-- Racing Club-Rosario Central
Sunday May 11
17.10-- Quilmes A.C.-Gimnasia y Esgrima L.P.
17.10-- Belgrano (Cba.)-Arsenal F.C.
18.15-- Boca Jrs.-Lanús
21.30-- Argentinos Jrs.-River Plate



Averages (relegations) table: