Racing Club crush Colon to go top

BUENOS AIRES - Colombia striker Teofilo Gutierrez scored twice as Racing Club crushed Colon 4-0 away to go top of the Argentine Clausura championship on Sunday.

Racing, who have won four of their five matches, have 12 points, two more than San Lorenzo, who beat Boca Juniors 1-0 on Saturday, Banfield and Olimpo.

Champions Estudiantes, who won the Apertura title in December, are fifth with nine points after losing 1-0 at home to Godoy Cruz in the Ciudad de La Plata stadium, their second defeat.

Gutierrez took his tally to five goals in three matches, while Racing scored four for the second match in a row.

Forwards Pablo Luguercio and Gabriel Hauche (pictured) also found the net for Racing who have made light of the loss for the rest of season of Colombian Giovanni Moreno, their most gifted player, with a knee ligament injury.

"We try to have fun and put the ball on the ground," Gutierrez, signed last month before the start of the Clausura, told reporters.

"This is thanks to the hard work we put in all week. We respect our rivals but we know we're strong."

Boca and River Plate, the two greatest rivals in Argentina, had a black weekend.

River conceded their first goals in five matches going down to their first defeat, 2-1 at home to Velez Sarsfield in the Monumental stadium where Uruguayan striker Santiago Silva scored both their goals.

Young goalkeeper Leandro Chichizola, who had kept a clean sheet in his first four first division matches, handed Velez the first goal on a plate when he mistimed his kick at a back-pass and Silva had merely to push the ball into the unguarded net in the 34th minute.

River hit back with a penalty three minutes after the interval converted by striker Mariano Pavone but six minutes from time burly Silva, nicknamed Tank, netted another loose ball in a goalmouth melee.

The victory put Velez level with River in joint sixth place with eight points apiece.

Boca are four points behind them after going down to their third defeat, 1-0 away to San Lorenzo.

Boca played poorly and missed the spark of creativity from Juan Roman Riquelme, who was still unavailable through injury.

Coach Julio Cesar Falcioni, upset with his team's finishing but adamant he would not quit, told reporters: "We didn't come here (to Boca) for the money. We came to do things properly and we're not leaving without succeeding."


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