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Own goal of the season (VIDEO)
by Ian Plenderleith, September 30th, 2008 7AM



[ARGENTINA/VIDEO] After River Plate took just six points from its opening seven games, it might have been just the start that River coach Diego Simeone had demanded from his struggling side -- a spectacular early goal to set the tone for a much needed home win over Racing Club. Defender Facundo Quiroga duly delivered a superb overhead kick in the 13th minute, converting a cross with his back to goal from 12 yards out -- right past River's goalkeeper Juan Ojeda and into his own net.

It was the first goal in a see-saw 3-3 tie that saw both defenses do their best to hand the game to the other team on a (river) plate. Three headers were nodded in without challenge, and the other two resulted from streaky deflections. Quiroga at least made some amends by scoring the final equalizer of the day that earned his team a point, but the reigning champion is still in sixteenth place.

The only consolation for River Plate is that close rival Boca Juniors is on a patchy run too, going down 4-1 to newly promoted Gody Cruz, from the central province of Mendoza. Colombian Jairo Costillo Cortes scored a hat trick for Cruz, playing its second ever season at the top level. Its first, in 2006-07, ended in relegation, but this time the team is in ninth place. Boca is fourth, despite the defeat and a string of poor results in recent weeks.

Other new boys, San Martin Tucuman, are sixth after a 1-1 tie on the road at Rosario Central. CA Tigre stays second after an early goal from last week's two-goal conqueror of Boca Juniors, Martin Morel, was enough to see them edge past Gimnasia y Esgrima Jujuy, who had two players dismissed. San Lorenzo held on to the top spot after a 2-0 home win over Arsenal de Sarandi, while Estudiantes won the La Plata derby 3-1 against Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata.



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