Saturday, September 8, 2012

Tough Decisions Ahead

Tomorrow Newell's Old Boys venture to Buenos Aires to face River Plate. This match may well be the first real test for La Lepra in the Torneo Inicial so far. River, just back to the Primera after a season in the B, are off to a decent enough start with two wins and two draws after their first five games.

Newell's, on the other hand, are only a point off the pace set by early leaders Boca Juniors. Three wins and two draws is a great start to the season. Newell's are the only team after five matches to yet concede a goal. If we can survive our sixth and still be able to say that it will be amazing.

What worries me about Newell's however is our lack of goal scoring so far. Five games in, and we have only four goals ourselves. Other worries for Sunday is that defender Marcos Cáceres will be out due to an ankle sprain, and midfielder Maxi Rodriguez will be missing due to being called up to the Albicelestes (Argentine National Team.) That leaves questions as to who coach Gerardo Martino will have playing in their place.

Milton Casco or Cristian Díaz are listed as the possible replacements in defense. With Maxi not available it seems that either Lucas Bernardi will play in midfield in a 4-4-2 formation, or Ignacio Scocco will start with the team shifting to a 4-3-3.

Guzmán; Casco or Díaz, Vergini, López, Heinze; Pérez, Villalba, Bernardi or Scocco, Vangioni; Sperduti, Figueroa

Personally, I'd rather both Bernardi AND Scocco started. Figueroa could easily be dropped to the bench. We will see what happens.

The fans also have some choices to make later this year as the team president Guillermo Lorente will be facing likely candidate Jorge Griffa in elections in December. The two met this week and are reported to have agreed to a "non-aggression" pact. We will see how long that lasts.

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