Friday, August 21, 2009

Another Win In An Opener... I'm Taking This One With A Grain Of Salt

I was not as confident as some going into this match, even though Los Diablos Rojos had not played well during the the Clausura, and had lost many of their best players (most significantly Daniel Montenegro to América in Mexico,) this is still a team being lead by Tolo Gallego. While he took over the club during the Clausura, he now had the full off season to work the team into his mold to open the Apertura, and opening at home* Tolo had every right to expect a result in his team's favor.

With the 9 PM start time (Argentine local,) I was home in time to watch the game from the beginning. At half time the score was still tied 0-0, and then the feed I was watching froze but good. So... being the impulsive sort, I figured I had time (15 minutes) to move the computer to a new location, something I'd been thinking of doing, hoping to get a better connection (my internet link is through a wireless router.) Silly me. An hour later, I finally got everything going again.

Fortunately, there's still Youtube, and thus the following clip from the game showing Insaurralde scoring off a corner in the 77th minute.

Newell's are thus off to another good start, beating Independiente away 1-0.
Starting line up for Newell's:

Quiroga, Machuca, Aguilar, Inaurralde
Bernardi, Fórmica, Vangioni, Mateo
Achucarro, Núñez

Nice to see Mateo get the start, continuing the two holding/defensive midfielder tactic. I also like that they've given him the number 5 shirt (traditionally given to the holding midfielder in Argentina.) With the four man back line, I'm hoping Sensini has given up on the three man defense.

The only starters today that were regular starters during the Clausura are Inaurralde, Bernardi, Fórmica, and Vangioni. Quiroga started a few games as well, but wasn't a regular.

Christian Sánchez Prette for Fórmica 63rd
Martin Seri for Achucarro 74th
Franco Dolci for Núñez 90th

Mauro Fórmica was our best player during the Clausura, but I'm not surprised he left this game early. Play in the first half showed that Sensini is still enamored with playing long ball futbol. Mauro showed during the Clausura that he's better suited to the traditional Argentine short pass, and dribbling game. I've never been a fan of long ball play, as it's just speculative. Your sending the ball forward just hoping that your forwards get to the ball before the opposition. In the first half all that came of such was a few offsides calls.

Still, a win is a win, and I'm glad for the 3 points. While it's a good start, it's not quite like the Clausura, where the team played beyond expectations to win their first two games. While I only saw the first half, what I saw gave me no delusions this time around. They played alright, but I've seen Newell's play better... even while playing speculative long ball futbol.

*Well, OK, technically it was a home game for Independiente, but the game was actually played at Estadio Néstor Díaz Pérez, in Lanús. Independiente's new stadium is still under construction.

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