Victory returns to Tigres - 2-0!

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA, August 19.- The UANL Tigres got back on the path to victory, beating the UNAM Pumas 2-0 tonight, to become one of the top contenders for the Apertura 2017 title.

Eduardo Vargas and André-Pierre Gignac, who missed a penalty in the first half, scored the goals that gave Tigres their sixth, seventh and eighth points.

FIRST HALF

The pace at the start of the match was somewhat slow, but our side gradually began to get the evening and the match being played on the pitch back on track, attacking from the flanks, making the most of Javier Aquino and Ismael Sosa.

At 5’, Van Rankin’s shot went over Nahuel Guzman’s goal, taking advantage of a bad move on the part of Tigres’ defense. At 12’, Aquino came into the box, but his cross was easily deflected by the goalkeeper.

However, at minute 15’, Sosa managed to break away down the right-hand side, crossed at the level of the penalty spot to a find Eduardo Vargas, whose header defeated the Mexico City goalkeeper, bringing the score to 1-0.

After the goal, Tigres sought to take advantage of their opponent’s despondency, when, at 17’, André-Pierre Gignac’s attempt was saved on the goal line by netkeeper Mendoza.

Not long after, our captain, Juninho, was forced off the pitch by a muscle injury after endeavoring to switch play. Alberto Acosta substituted him, to play on the left side, and Paco Meza moved to the center with Hugo Ayala.

Pumas tried to react with long-range passes, but either Nahuel’s solid defense or their poor aim, put a stop to their attempts at equalizing.

Tigres seemed to have the second goal in the bag after a hand ball by a Pumas defense forced the referee to award a penalty. Gignac took the penalty, which was saved by the goalkeeper, making this a missed opportunity.

SECOND HALF

Pumas started the second half eager to equalize as quickly as possible, and almost did so when Nicolás Castillo’s backheel barely went wide of Nahuel’s right post.

At 51’, Acosta had a chance with a mid-distance shot cleared by the goalkeeper to concede a corner. At 59´, it was Chaka Rodríguez’s turn with a cross into the box looking for Gignac, but the defense got in the way.

Gignac had another opportunity at 65’, with a header from inside the box, but goalkeeper Saldívar began to become Pumas’ best player, when he saved what looked to be Tigres’ second goal.

Off a set-piece situation, Tigres had another attempt, when Hugo Ayala’s header was deflected by the netkeeper at minute 75.

But their efforts were rewarded at minute 79, when a ball cleared in the box by the goalkeeper found Gignac, whose right-footed shot defeated Saldívar, making it 2-0, to the delight of the Incomparable Ones.

At 82,’ Vargas almost scored a fantastic goal, when, off a cross into the box by Gignac, the Chilean attempted a scissor kick that unfortunately went too high.

At 83’, with Valencia on the pitch in Vargas’ place, Jürgen Damm received on the right, but his cross faded away.

Jesús Dueñas could have scored the third at 89’, off a cross by Gignac that landed in front of the goal, but the shot went straight into the netkeeper’s hands.

At 91’, Valencia had an opportunity off a free kick, but his powerful shot was saved by the goalkeeper.

LINEUPS

UNAM: Alfredo Saldívar; Josecarlos Van Rankin, Luis Quintana, Alan Mendoza (Joffre Guerrón 65’), David Cabrera, Abraham González, Bryan Rabello, Brian Figueroa (Néstor Calderón 73’), Jesús Gallardo, José García and Nicolás Castillo.

TIGRES: Nahuel Guzmán; Luis Rodríguez, Juninho (Alberto Acosta 25’), Hugo Ayala, Francisco Meza, Israel Jiménez, Jesús Dueñas, Javier Aquino, Ismael Sosa (Jürgen Damm 78’), Eduardo Vargas (Enner Valencia 83’) and André-Pierre Gignac.

GOALS

1-0   (15’) Ismael Sosa crosses from the right to Eduardo Vargas, who scores with a header.

2-0   (78’) The defense clears the ball, which is found by André-Pierre Gignac, whose right-footed shot defeats the goalkeeper.

YELLOW CARDS

TIGRES: Israel Jiménez (85’).

UNAM: Joffre Guerrón (85’) and José García (90’)

RED CARDS

None

REFEREE: Fernando Guerrero

No. 1: Marcos Quintero

No. 2: Andrés Hernández

Fourth official: Jorge A. Pérez