Buonanotte guides River to rare win

BUENOS AIRES - Struggling giants River Plate earned a rare victory in the Argentine championship on Sunday when they beat Atletico Tucuman 3-1.

River are a long way behind joint leaders Banfield (32 points) and Newell's Old Boys (32), though, with 13 points from 14 matches after their third win of the Apertura championship left them in 13th place.

Having fallen behind to a headed Emanuel Gigliotti goal after three minutes and played poorly for the first half, River turned the match round in the second spell when veteran midfielder Marcelo Gallardo equalised in the 69th.

Forward Diego Buonanotte, a member of Argentina's 2008 Olympic gold medal squad, put River ahead with a fine shot into the top corner with 15 minutes to go.

He was then put through two minutes later by Gallardo and hit a square ball across the box into the path of 17-year-old striker Daniel Villalva who coolly slotted in to make sure of the points.

Banfield, the only team still unbeaten, routed title holders Velez Sarsfield 3-0 on Saturday, while Newell's notched their sixth consecutive victory when they beat Chacarita Juniors 1-0 away on Friday.

Colon are third, four points behind the leaders after Saturday's 2-0 home win over Argentinos Juniors was secured with two penalties by veteran striker Esteban Fuertes.

South American champions Estudiantes, who are six points off the pace in fourth, will be looking to recover from a 3-0 loss at Rosario Central last week that included two own goals when they visit Racing Club on Monday.