San Lorenzo opens Argentine playoff with win

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San Lorenzo proved too strong for Tigre on Wednesday, picking up a crucial 2-1 victory at the Estadio Amalfitani in the opening match of Argentina's three-way playoff for the Apertura title. The victory means it only needs a win over Boca Juniors this weekend to claim its second title in the past four seasons.

Miguel Angel Russo's side started the stronger of the two teams, and took a well deserved lead in the 18th minute when Pablo Barrientos slotted the ball home from close range after good work from Santiago Solari down the left wing.

Two minutes later, Gonzalo Bergessio doubled San Lorenzo's lead when he met a precise Barrientos cross with a superb volley.

Despite being two goals down, Tigre, which is hoping to win the first national championship in its 106-year history, picked up its game towards the end of the half.

After the break, San Lorenzo continued to dominate its opponents, and looked extremely dangerous each time it moved forward. Tigre, which was completely off form, struggled to make an impact, and it seemed that San Lorenzo would extend its advantage at any moment.

Diego Cagna pushed his side forward in an attempt to reduce the deficit, and it managed to do this in the 76th minute, when substitute Leandro Lazzaro beat Agustin Orion with a well-placed header.

Tigre came close to drawing level on a number of opportunities, but failed to beat Orion for a second time.

With a victory over Boca Juniors at the Cilindro de Avellaneda on Saturday, San Lorenzo will claim the Argentine title for the 11th time.