River Loses First Game
Aldosivi won 1-2 in yet another poor showing by River who fall to second place in the B Nacional. Both of Aldosivi’s goals came on corner kicks.
Woeful. Disastrous. Uninspired. There are many adjectives that can describe the game that will go down in history as River’s first loss in the B Nacional. After a week off due to the national elections, River returned to action hosting Mar Del Plata’s Aldosivi in the first meeting ever between these two clubs. Aldosivi , as expected, looked to defend first and find offense when opportunities presented themselves. So it was no surprise that most of the game would be played in Aldosivi’s end, yet River was again unable to be organized or precise in attack.
River has not found a successful strategy or style of play that they can impose on opponents week in week out. This is especially frustrating because River generally has an advantage in possession, but not much to show for it. The offense continues to be imprecise and disorganized.
It is also clear as day that when Carlos Sanchez and Martin Aguirre are not on their game, the team as a whole suffers. Both failed to contribute in a meaningful way, leaving Fernando Cavenaghi isolated in attack. Andres Rios, who had an acceptable game relatively speaking, was good pressuring Aldosivi’s defenders, but couldn’t connect with team mates.
Though they rarely threatened Chichizola’s goal, Aldosivi found the lead in the 20’ off a corner. Chichizola could not reach the headed ball, The only clear chance of the first half would fall to Rios who skillfully dribbled past the keeper only to see his shot turned away on the line.
For the second half, Almeyda sent Alejandro Dominguez on for Cristian Ledesma, who had been virtually invisible up to that point. It would take only a matter of minutes for luck to fall River’s way when referee Pablo Diaz incredibly awarded a penalty to the Millonarios. Not only was the foul itself dubious, the infraction clearly happened outside the box. Nonetheless, Cavenaghi would step up and level the score.
Dominguez though looked slow and out of shape after missing three games due to illness. River was disconnected and every attack would end in a cross into the box only to be cleared by Aldosivi’s defenders. Aldosivi closed the door every time and their patience would be rewarded with five minutes to go when a rare corner in their favor found Zanino, who beat Luciano Vella to the near post and give the visitors a deserved 1-2 win.
The loss is River’s first this season and leaves them 2 points behind Instituto. It was hard not to notice the look of concern on Almeyda’s face during the post game press conference, where he recognized the awful performance of his team. Next is a long trip up north to visit Gimnasia de Jujuy where River must find a way to get back on their feet.