Sunday, April 3, 2016

Nacional back in title race after beating El Tanque Sisley

After struggling during the past few league matches, Nacional have underlined their ambitions and returned to the title race. Last night, they beat El Tanque Sisley 3-1 at home.

Christian Tabó and Léo Gamalho. (Photo:
Additionally to their previously known absentees, Sebastián Fernández and Gonzalo Porras could also not play on Saturday night. They were replaced by Léo Gamalho and Sebastián Eguren. 

First half

Despite their personnel issues, Nacional had a good start to the game and it only took them nine minutes to make it count. Christian Tabó outsprinted everyone on the left wing and finished through the legs of goalkeeper Leandro Gelpi for an early lead at the Gran Parque Central. Like all season long already, the wings were Nacional's biggest strength and source of most of the pressure.

Jorge Fucile and Nico López could have added to the lead shortly after, but Gelpi did well to deny them. However, El Tanque Sisley struck back a bit surprisingly after 22 minutes through Walter Vaz. He was simply given too much space by the home team's back line and made captain Diego Polenta look a little silly in this scene. His cool finish left Esteban Conde no chance whatsoever.

Nacional would not let the equalizer bother them too much and continued to press up the field, producing another decent chance before the break. Léo Gamalho's header flew by the left post, which is why we went to halftime tied at one.

Second half

Rightfully, it did not take the hosts long to retake the lead in the second half and it turned out to be the Brazilian striker Gamalho who had previously missed his chance. After 55 minutes, he was at the end of Tabó's freekick cross into the center of the area and had no trouble finishing his unchallenged opportunity.

Nacional controlled the game with a lead in their backhands now and made it easier for themselves. While they tried to decide the game earlier against a weak visiting team, it took them until the 85th minute to get that insurance marker.

Who else but Nico López should be the one to score? He was played through on goal and was running towards Gelpi all alone, curved around him, then around another defender who had managed to come back and slotted the ball into the empty net for his sixth goal of the campaign.


For Nacional, it was a very important win after three rather average games in the Uruguayan league. Plaza Colonia's loss at the top of the table puts them right back into title contention, just three points behind now.

Gamalho surely had his best game in a Tricolor shirt, while López continues to dominate for his club. The young striker now has 6 goals in 7 games and is currently the second best goalscorer in the league after Wanderers' Gastón Rodriguez.

Another player to use his chance was Christian Tabó. In the absence of both Kevin Ramírez and Leandro Barcia, he is making the most of the time given to him and asked for further opportunities with yesterday's performance.


Standings provided by Sofascore LiveScore


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