Landslide and Leadership: 3-0!

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA, March 2nd.- The UANL Tigres maintained a firm hold on the leadership position of the Liga MX Clausura 2019, having defeated the Pachuca Tuzos 3-0 this evening in the Universitario Stadium.

Two own goals by Stiven Barreiro and a superb goal delivered by Guido Pizarro, all in the first half, gave our players their 20th, 21st and 22nd points in the tournament, to continue at the top of the general table.

 

FIRST HALF

Tigres got off to a very promising start in this match, against a team that spent at least the first five minutes speculating, though began to react when Enner Valencia came close at 3’ with a shot that went high.

The Tuzos were trying to put the pressure on our side’s defense, enabling them to create several chances against Nahuel Guzmán’s goal.

Nevertheless, at 5’, Luis Quiñones’ attempt went over the crossbar, assisted by Luis Rodríguez. Then, at 8’, Jesús Dueñas passed in the box to André-Pierre Gignac, whose header went wide.

Argentinian keeper Nahuel came into his own at 10’, when he was forced to intervene practically one-on-one against Edwin Cardona, blocking the shot with his body.

At 14’ Enner Valencia attempted a half-scissors kick on the outskirts of the box, but it went much too high, and, at 16’, Hugo Ayala prevented a goal with a spectacular sliding tackle, conceding a corner.

Gignac created another opportunity at 17’, but his soft shot was blocked by the goalkeeper. Pachuca reacted at 24’ with a shot by Franco Jara that Nahuel had no difficulty in saving.

A minute afterwards, the Universitario Stadium exploded with joy when Enner Valencia crossed from the right to the far post, where Gignac was waiting, but Stiven Barreiro cut off the attempt with a sliding tackle only to put the ball into his own net. The score was now 1-0.

This goal gave Ricardo Ferretti’s men a good tactical position and, at 29’, Gignac’s shot went into the goalkeeper’s hands. Then, at 32’, Barreiro scored yet another own goal, when Chaka Rodríguez, in a play along the right, crossed to Gignac whose backheel was intercepted by Stiven Barreiro who again put the ball into the net.

With a 2-0 lead, Tigres began to feel more relaxed on the pitch, allowing them to create attacks on the visitor’s goal, where keeper Blanco blocked several opportunities.

Minutes later, at 41’, excitement in the stands reached boiling point, when Guido Pizarro received the ball in the midfield area, shook off two defenders, broke away and penetrated the box to score with a superb shot as the keeper came off his line, making it 3-0.

 

SECOND HALF

In the second half, since Pachuca was forced to look for more, Tigres devoted themselves to waiting and attacking along both flanks.

At 55’, Luis Quiñones nearly scored the fourth when, in a play that looked offside and assisted by a defender, he came face-to-face with the goalkeeper, but his shot hit the right-hand post preventing the fourth goal from materializing.

Soon afterwards, at 59’, Gignac opened up a space outside the box, looked as though he was about to score, but the defense intercepted the shot, conceding a corner.

At 62’, it was Luis Quiñones’ turn to have a chance in the box, crossing to Gignac, but the defense intervened before it could reach him.

A minute later, Chaka Rodríguez crossed from the right to the far post, where Julián Quiñones endeavored to finish with a header, but missed to the left.

Pachuca reacted with a shot by Erick Aguirre inside the box, at 70’, but Nahuel intervened with a spectacular save.

Julián Quiñones came close to the fourth at 72’, when he took the ball off a defender, made his way into the goal area to come face-to-face with the keeper, but the shot went over the bar. Tigres was continuing to create opportunities and wanted even more.

Tuca began to move his players around, taking Julián Quiñones off at minute 74 to give Jürgen Damm an opportunity and to refresh the attack along the left-hand flank.

Luis Quiñones had another chance, this time at 78’, when Dueñas broke away down the left, crossed to Gignac, who back-passed to the Colombian, but the attempt missed to the left.

At 87’, the Tuzos came close, but Nahuel Guzmán kept the ball out of his net and saved it again in the counterattack.

 

LINEUPS

TIGRES: 1 Nahuel Guzmán; 3 Carlos Salcedo, 4 Hugo Ayala, 5 Rafael de Souza (6 Jorge Torres Nilo 87’), 10 André-Pierre Gignac, 13 Enner Valencia (9 Eduardo Vargas 87’), 19 Guido Pizarro, 26 Luis Quiñones, 28 Luis Rodríguez, 29 Jesús Dueñas and 33 Julián Quiñones (25 Jürgen Damm 74’).

MGR.: RICARDO FERRETTI

PACHUCA: 13 Alfonso Blanco; 2 Stiven Barreiro, 5 Víctor Guzmán (11 José Ulloa 66’), 6 Raúl López, 10 Edwin Cardona (26 Víctor Dávila 66’), 14 Erick Aguirre, 15 Edwin Hernández, 16 Jorge Hernández (24 Pablo López 77’), 23 Oscar Murillo, 29 Franco Jara and 33 Ismael Sosa.

MGR.: MARTÍN PALERMO

 

GOALS

1-0 (24’) Enner Valencia breaks away along the right and Stiven Barreiro cuts off his cross to score an own goal.

2-0 (32’) Luis Rodríguez crosses from the right, then André-Pierre Gignac’s backheel is intercepted by Stiven Barreiro who scores an own goal.

3-0 (43’) Guido Pizarro receives in the midfield area, penetrates the box and scores as the goalkeeper comes off his line.

 

YELLOW CARDS

TIGRES: André-Pierre Gignac (15’), Rafael de Souza (56’)

PACHUCA: Víctor Guzmán (10’), Erick Aguirre (73’), Oscar Murillo (77’)

 

RED CARDS

None

 

REFEREE: Marco A. Ortíz

ASSISTANT REFEREE No. 1: Michel Morales

ASSISTANT REFEREE No. 2: Enrique Martínez

FOURTH OFFICIAL: Mario Vargas