Sunday, November 29, 2009

Please, We Are Lepers Not Elephants

Rolando Schiavi has come out and stated that Newell's Old Boys will need to win their final four matches to have any chance at the Apertura '09 title. The general feeling at the club is that Banfield will drop some points in their final matches, though I'd have to say that Newell's have the tougher matches, starting with tomorrow's match against Colón de Santa Fe, at the Brigadier Gral. Estanislao López, better known as El Cementerio de Los Elefantes - the Elephant's Graveyard in English.
The stadium has earned that nickname, as it is a very difficult place to win as an away team. Even when Colón aren't playing well in general, clubs dread having to play there, especially when their chances at the title are on the line. Thing is, Los Sabaleros are playing well, sitting in third place on 31 points, though they've played one more game than leaders Banfield (35 pts) and second place Newell's (33 pts.)

I have yet to see anything in the way of an expected line up for La Lepra, which I suspect is due to Sensini and his staff perhaps wanting to keep his counterpart at Colón, Antonio Mohamed, from knowing what to expect. Not so with the opposition...

Colón de Santa Fe expected lineup:

Diego Pozo
Alexis Ferrero, Ariel Garcé, Marcelo Goux
Ismael Quilez, Alejandro Capurro, Cristian Pellerano, Germán Rivarola, Nicolás Torres
Federico Nieto, Esteban Fuertes.

The player to worry about, of course, is Federico Nieto, who is having a career year so far with 11 goals, having played in every game for Colón. Even if Newell's defense manages to neutralize him, his front line partner Fuertes isn't doing badly either, having scored 6 while sitting out 5 matches.

The less I say about the man who's scheduled to referee the match, the better. Let's just say that in book "Soccer In Sun And Shadow" Eduardo Galeano (as translated by Mark Fried) states "In Spanish he is the árbitro and he's arbitrary by definition." Truer words I've never heard.

Now, it's time to watch Banfield take on Racing Club...

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