The Primera B Nacional , which is the second tournament in importance in the country had too many big teams taking part, and they all kept us guessing about promotions and relegations until the very last day of the season.
One of the biggest teams in the country, River Plate, were crowned champions and the shame of having been away from the top flight for the first time in their 110 years history is now a thing of the past.
Could not have been more fitting that David Trezeguet scoring both goals on their 2-0 victory against Almirante Brown that sealed their promotion and the title also.
Before the last round of games began River and Instituto were 3 points clear of Rosario Central and Quilmes.
So in theory, we could have had a 4 way mini tournament to decide the two that were going to be promoted and the 2 who would play the play off/out against Primera A teams.
But even on the last day the twists were incredible. As stated River won, but then Instituto incredibly lost 3-0 at home to Ferro and Rosario Central lost 3-2 to relegated Desamparados de San Juan.
Those two results meant that if Quilmes won, they would be the second team going up. They did win; they beat Brown de Madryn 2-0.
So Instituto and Rosario Central will have to play against two teams of the primera A and beat them if they want promotion to the top division.
But the Torneo Clausura of Primera A, was as changing and surprising to the last minute as the Nacional B.
We got to the last round of games with 7 teams fighting in the relegation zone and 3 for the title.
Incredibly one of the teams, Tigre, was involved in both fights.
How can that be?
Relegation in Argentina is not as straight forward as in most places.
There is a special table for that. You need to add the points the teams have won over the last three years, and then you divide those points by the amount of games the teams play on that division over the last 3 seasons.
That division gives you your “relegation average” points. The 2 teams with the worth overall average go down automatically, and the 3rd and fourth from bottom have to play the 3rd and 4th from the Nacional B (Instituto and Rosario Central) for the right to stay up.
So Tigre, who were joint leaders with Arsenal, were also one of the teams with the lowest “relegation average”. Meaning they have had a good tournament, but over the past three years they were not that good.
In the end Tigre drew at home to Independiente and Arsenal de Sarandi beat Belgrano de Cordoba at home, thus becoming the Champions of Argentina for the first time in their history.
The point Tigre got after their draw, assured them survival in Primera A.
In the end the teams that went down were Olimpo de Bahia Blanca and Banfield.
With San Lorenzo (one of the big 5 teams in the country) facing Instituto and San Martin de san Juan facing Rosario Central in the Play off/out.
Well done to all the winners, commiserations to those relegated, but mostly thank you all for such an incredible season.
By the way you can read what I wrote back in January when previewing this tournament here “what can we expect from the clausura 2012”