Sunday, March 13, 2016

Espinoza shines as Huracán beat Defensa

Huracán have surprised with an away win in Argentina's Primera División. The outsiders shut down the league's best offense in Defensa y Justicia and beat them 0-2. 

Huracán on the front foot: Rare picture, but still all three points. (Photo:
Man of the match: Cristian Espinoza, who fills the right midfield position in Huracán's lineup. The Argentine scored the game-winning goal in the 26th minute and showed the most for the visiting team that was inferior to Defensa. Huracán only collected a total of 9 shots, 4 of them belonged to Espinoza himself. The decisive goal itself was not even too brilliant: Goalkeeper Arias produced a woeful error from inside his own penalty area, playing the ball right into the foot of Espinoza who waited on the edge of it. Watch it here:

Defensa's main decifit laid in the usage of their own chances. They had the majority of shots, but either lacked precision completely by firing a large quantity of them wide, or against the post, as did Isnaldo and Bordagaray, who came off a hattrick from the 5-1 win at Argentinos Juniors.

When taking a look at last night's heatmap, you can tell where the game was being played. Defensa is on the left, Huracán on the right. The only time the Copa Sudamericana runner-up spent in the opponent's half was on that right flank with Espinoza and Abila who let himself fall back to get into the play.

The big striker did so successfully and ended up scoring the second goal that basically sealed things in the 63rd minute. Ramón Abila was sent through beautifully by his teammate Alejandro Romero, fended off a defender and went around the goalkeeper to finish into the empty net. 

While Defensa y Justicia won't have to worry with the offensive qualities they showed in previous matches, last night just wasn't theirs. 71% possession, 25-9 shots, 9-3 corners and still a loss thanks to individual errors and own inability to convert. But let's not underestimate the role of Huracán's goalkeeper Marcos Díaz right here. He showed up when he needed to and made some crucial saves when called upon, before his team was on the "safe side" and during the last few minutes of Defensa's desperate attempts.

Huracán will face Tigre away in midweek, Defensa will have to wait until next week to make up for their loss when going to Estudiantes.


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