Racing x Puebla
Racing drew the first leg 2-2 despite dominating at the end and coming close to a third goal. Sadly it was not to be, and the team followed up that performance by losing 2-1 to Atletico Tucuman, a newly promoted team, in their first Primera Division match last weekend. Admittedly Racing played a number of reserves in that game, yet they were still on top for long periods and again a bit unlucky not to get more from the game.
Well, I think that defeat might serve as a bit of a wake up call for Racing, who needs to get going if it's to compete for prizes this season. One thing I've noticed with Racing is that under Facundo Sava they concede a lot more goals than they did when Diego Cocca was in charge. That's because Sava's Racing plays more offensively than they used to do, as the results of his first five games illustrate:
Estudiantes 4 – 2 Racing Club
Boca Juniors 2 – 4 Racing Club
Independiente 1 – 3 Racing Club
Puebla 2 – 2 Racing Club
Atlético Tucumán 2 – 1 Racing Club
This tells me that Racing aren't going to sit back and play for the 0-0, but will try to score and put the match out of reach. We should also note this is also Sava's first game in Racing's own stadium, which will be full of Racing fans, so the team will want to put on a good show for them.
Puebla's coach Marini has been pretty bullish, telling the press that his team has a good chance and isn't afraid of Racing. He said the aim is to try and snatch a 1-0 win to qualify. Marini's confidence has been boosted by Puebla's 4-1 win over Atlas at the weekend, a game in which he also rested several first teamers. No doubt Puebla will be cautious at first, but they simply have to score to qualify and that means they're going to attack at some stage, which means they'll be exposed to Racing's dangerous counters.
I can see a tight first half followed by a much more open second half, and I think a well-rested, fully fit Racing team playing in front of its own fans should be able to win this, hopefully by more than one goal