Tigres’ plan will be to go out to win.- Damián

ZUAZUA | Tuesday, August 23, 2016.- The match against Plaza Amador on Wednesday will be Tigres’ presentation at home within the 2016-2017 CONCACAF Champions League. The felines cannot afford to underestimate their opponent and will have to go out with the mentality of winning, not leaving anything to chance and making important progress on the path to qualifying to the next round of the tournament, assured Damián Álvarez.

“This (the match against Plaza Amador from Panama) is serious for us; it’s one of the objectives we have set for ourselves and we won’t be leaving anything to chance in this competition. We know we have the opportunity with an alternative team to show what we are capable of.

“The plan is to go out to win. During the match we will do our best to solve any situations that might arise and find the best way to earn the three points in order to come closer to qualifying. We must understand that you have to play the matches, that every team deserves seriousness and we always play with this seriousness, without underestimating any team, and seeking to make the most of our capacities. That’s just basic, so there’s nothing to stop us going into this match with humility and giving our all,” said ‘Enano’.

They know the Panamanian opponent.

“We’ve seen a couple of videos and we’re focusing (…) on the tactical side, looking for their good facets and weaknesses. Then, based on that, analyze it and choose the best proposal to win. Obviously, this is an athletic, dynamic team that runs and puts the pressure on, which is important for us, because it they pressure us, we have to pressure them even more and, above all, play football. I think these will be the guidelines, the conditions we want to impose.”

They will not be playing with statistics.

“(…) they’re the Mexican teams that compete in the Club World Cup, which indicates that for tomorrow, the statistics say that we’re going to win the match, but we must focus on tomorrow’s match and not think that just because we’re a Mexican side we’ll win easily.”

No surprises at home.

“We don’t want that to happen, especially not at home. That’s why I’m saying that the only approach is to go out onto the pitch to win, but playing in our own way, regardless of who our opponent is. We have to be the better side and understand the seriousness and risk of playing against a team that runs fast, puts the pressure on, that can handle fixed tactics, because they also train, they also play and they also have players who want to win. We have to overcome this, but we don’t want any team to defeat us at home.”

Plaza Amador will not be allowed to perform a feat.

“It’s difficult, because Tigres isn’t just any team and playing against us is hard, especially on our field. They’ve got a difficult test, but our test is even more complicated, going out onto the pitch, knowing what we’re working for and that the players (we have) must defeat their rival and win the match. So, both teams go out to win and the best team will be the winner.”

Tigres has to keep on working in the same way throughout the tournament.- ‘Tuca’

ZUAZUA | Monday, August 22, 2016.- Ricardo Ferretti doesn’t sit back to contemplate the results achieved so far, nor does he get carried away by all the celebrations going on outside the team. On the contrary, he believes that these accomplishments are the team’s obligation and they must maintain this line until the end of the tournament with even greater effort and dedication.

“This team has to keep on working. There’s nothing else we have to prove. I think we have to maintain our level of commitment. We have amazing directors, a fantastic fan base, a great squad and we are under an obligation to carry on working and achieve positive results. That’s everyone’s objective,” ‘Tuca’ explained at the Cueva de Zuazua.

Humility is a requirement to stay on the path to victory

“In order to continue (at this pace), we have to keep on working, be humble and understand that each match is different. How did I feel about two triumphs (in the League and CONCACAF)? Happy. And, what have I learnt from them? That we have to carry on working even harder to achieve our two key goals.”

There has been an improvement compared to other tournaments.

“Hopefully. Right now the team, compared to the same time in the last tournaments when we were not doing so well regarding the football aspect or (number of) points, today we are in a better position. But that doesn’t mean it’s enough. We must conscientiously carry on doing what we’ve been doing so far and expand our objectives.”

Having a pre-season is one of the key factors.

“I fully trust Memo (Orta), who is the team’s physical trainer. I’ve been working with him for 24 years, so I total confidence in him and I know he’ll always ensure that the players are in tiptop shape. There’s the normal physical wear and tear just like in other tournaments. They affected us somewhat but I think we’re OK right now. There are always knocks, contusions, injuries, but we have the support of the medical department to get them back on their feet as soon as possible.”

Being at the top of the table isn’t a goal per se.

“Our directors have always asked us to classify in the best possible position, but being Super Leaders isn’t an obligation. Our duty is to endeavor to win each match and earn three points, and we know that if we do that, (…) and in the end the total of 17 points takes you to the top spot, well, then that would be tremendous.”

The understanding between Sosa and Gignac is backed by the whole team.

“In this match (against Pachuca), we saw the connection between them (Gignac and Sosa), but all the other players are equally important. For these two players to have the chance to implement the plays they did, it’s not just a matter between the two of them, even though their capacity is undeniable, but there are other players who assure that the ball reaches them in the simplest way possible, so that they can produce, and I hope everyone will continue to consolidate this conjunction, because that’s the aim of all this training.”

Nahuel congratulates his teammates who played in Costa Rica

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Thursday, August 18, 2016.- The efforts of his teammates in Costa Rica, which resulted in a 3-1 victory for Tigres over Herediano in the CONCACAF Champions League, was recognized by the goalkeeper Nahuel Guzmán, who praised the team’s amazing match and, above all, Fernando Fernández and Jonathan Espericueta’s goals.

“I played (in Costa Rica) last year and it’s a difficult pitch. It makes it hard for us to play in our usual way from low down, since the ball runs away and bounces too much. I think the second half was very good, particularly regarding decisiveness. Several goal opportunities were pulled off, scoring was very important for the guys who did so, such as ‘Quesos’, ‘Espiri’, who haven’t been playing quite so regularly.

“This result delivers a good start, because we won as visitors on a complicated pitch, so the players who travelled to Costa Rica, and have just got back, deserve our congratulations. Endeavoring to be the protagonists, to have a good Champions League is vital.”

It will be a fine match against Pachuca.

“There are two or three very solid teams at the moment, but for us, right now, because of the championship, the position on the table and what this match and this opponent mean, earning three points is important. Pachuca is a fine gauge, so we’ll do our best to rise to the occasion, take advantage of being hosts, the people, and these moments of good football that we’ve been enjoying.”.

It’s good that goal opportunities aren’t being generated against us.

“The objective lies at the end of the championship. That’s what we’re really interested in. It’s good that goal opportunities aren’t being generated against us, very few of them, above all it’s good to have conceded zero goals. It’s not always possible; it doesn’t always depend on us, but very often depends on the opponent’s qualities. We’ll have to try to carry on playing in the same way, firm, closing when it’s necessary, just like in the second half against Toluca”.

Maintaining zero doesn’t put the pressure on.

“No, because we have to win. It’s a huge possibility to reach the top, the ones up front, facing a great opponent who we know can harm us. It’s quite likely. I don’t think there’s any point at all (thinking about a record). In fact, we’ve taken several risks in some of the matches and played in our usual way. I think that if we focus too much on defending, it will be difficult to generate, so we have to be natural, play the game in the same way as always, without taking too many risks.”

Tigres wins in their Champions League debut

HEREDIA, Costa Rica | Wednesday, August 17, 2016.- At first, Tigres suffered in the hands of their hosts, taking their time to settle in on the field. However, they finally beat Herediano as visitors, thus earning their first three points in the CONCACAF Champions League, placing them as Group G leaders.

Damián Álvarez was the felines’ captain and also the man who opened the doors to victory, not just by scoring, but also by commanding the team when his experience was most needed.

Even though the team found it hard to adapt since the hadn’t played together on a regular basis, they ultimately scored goals and cornered the Costa Ricans on their synthetic turf. Now Tigres will host Plaza Amador, from Panama, next Wednesday.

INITIAL APPROACH

Tigres presented an alternative, though top quality, team for the start of the Champions League, with the veteran Damián Álvarez leading the eleven sent by Ricardo Ferretti onto the pitch. ‘Enano’, as Álvarez is known, was joined in the attack by the Paraguayan Fernando Fernández and Jürgen Damm.

The midfield was comprised of Manuel Viniegra, Jesús Dueñas and Luis Silva, who made his debut with the felines after playing for Real Salt Lake in the MLS, while the center was made up of José Rivas and Miguel Herrera, accompanied on the flanks by Luis ‘Chaka’ Rodríguez and Jorge Torres Nilo, as well as Enrique Palos in the goal.

The most striking feature of the team’s formation was the flexibility in the attacking positions, with Damián and Damm interchanging zones, leaving ‘Quesos’ alone at the forefront seeking passes and Silva acting as the liaison between the forwards.

FIRST HALF

Tigres found it hard to adapt in the first few minutes – this was the first match this team had played together – leaving huge holes at times between the midfield and the forwards, since Silva was far more concerned with supporting recovery.

The felines found it hard to settle in throughout the first half and even though they were in possession of the ball most of the time, they failed to play vertically. In the last third of the field they were unable to create any danger, although the man who demonstrated the greatest intensity and sought the most goal opportunities was Damián, with breakaways along the left and at times running with the ball from the center.

Herediano were the most dangerous team, smashing two balls into the posts, one from a free kick and the other with a header that miraculously landed in Palos’ hands.

SECOND HALF

At the start of the second half, Ricardo Ferretti replaced Luis Silva with Jonathan Espericueta in the same position, imbuing the attack with greater speed and freshness.  They were just settling in on the field when Dueñas sent the ball to Damm, who from the box and sent a cross to the center to ‘Quesos’ who arrived in time to send a shot into the back of the net.

Just as Tigres was playing its best, the Costa Ricans equalized with a long pass, taking advantage when they broke through the defense and nudged the ball in.

The match was at its peak, with the hosts slamming balls into the posts, which were rejected and deflected by the visitors.

‘Tuca’ took Damm off and replaced him with Luis Quiñones, seeking to gain greater ball control and depth, something that the felines appeared to dominate, making them look the far more dangerous side.  Tigres gradually took control of the match, playing together as a team to obtain a victory, although Herediano gave them a few scares.

#TIGREDATO

In the three Champions League matches they’ve played against each other, the felines have never lost, having tied twice and then won today. They are now at the top of Group G with three points.

GOALS:

Herediano:

1-1 (55’) Jesús Sánchez, who came on as a substitute, sent the ball into the back of the net in his very first shot, taking advantage of a cross into the center of the feline’s box.

Tigres:

0-1 (46’) Goal by Fernando Fernández who passed a fine low ball to Jürgen Damm along the right.

1-2 (77’) Damián Álvarez took advantage of a ball on the rebound from the defense that landed right in front of the goal, beating the goalie at the near post.

1-3 (90’) Jonathan Espericueta took advantage of a ball deflected by the Costa Rican goalkeeper, shooting from outside the box and defeating Herediano’s goal.

LINEUPS:

Herediano: Leonel Moreira; Pablo Salazar, Allan Miranda, Mauricio Núñez (José Sánchez 55’) and Leonardo González (Víctor Núñez 75’); Esteban Granados, Randall Azofeifa, José Cubero, Esteban Ramírez (Jonathan Hansen 46’); Elías Aguilar and Yendrick Ruiz

Tigres: Enrique Palos; Luis Rodríguez, Miguel Herrera, José Rivas and Jorge Torres Nilo; Manuel Viniegra, Jesús Dueñas and Luis Silva (Jonathan Espericueta 46’); Jürgen Damm (Luis Quiñones 76’), Fernando Fernández and Damián Álvarez (Julián Quiñones 83’)

Referee: Marlon Mejía (El Salvador)

YELLOW CARDS

Herediano: Allan Miranda (64’)

Tigres: Enrique Palos (67’), Damián Álvarez (82’)

RED CARDS:

None

Let’s start off on the right foot in Concacaf.- Damián Álvarez

APODACA | Tuesday, August 16, 2016.- This Wednesday sees the start of Tigres’ participation in the Concacaf Champions League and Damián Álvarez, a midfielder for the felines, revealed that the team’s aim is to start off on the right foot against the Costa Rican team Herediano and, ultimately, win this continental tournament.

“It’s one of the tournaments (Champions League) that’s on Tigres’ list of objectives. Let’s hope we get off to a good start tomorrow and have the opportunity to get as far as possible. The objective is to win and starting off on the right foot is always best,” the Argentine said.

Performance-based favorites

“We want to be the favorites based on our performances. We feel that we’re on a level with all the participating teams, but have to prove that we’re a good team whoever is playing. It’s always a good thing when a team that doesn’t usually play shows that it is up to the mark for these major matches.”

Proof of the team’s quality

“They don’t usually play (the team that travelled to Costa Rica) because the manager chooses the players. We are all competent footballers and know that we’re also all capable of being in the starting lineup, as long as we do well and all of us who have the opportunity to play tomorrow can prove this. That’s what’s important for everyone who’s travelling to Costa Rica.”

The Champions League is unfinished business for Tigres.

“It’s a piece of unfinished business. It would truly be amazing for us at this point to reach the Final again and win it this time. I think this team is ready to win an international tournament.”

NOTA 2

Herediano will be facing a quality team.- ‘Tuca’ Ferretti

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, August 15, 2016.- The battle begins for Tigres this week in the Concacaf Champions League and the team’s manager, Ricardo Ferretti, confirmed that he’ll be rotating the squad, assuring that the eleven men who will be going out into the field against Herediano will be top quality elements.

“I hope for the best (from the team), because they’re great players, a force to be reckoned with. The team starts there and when you see the lineup I think that whether I send them on against Herediano or on Saturday against Pachuca, it won’t make any difference,” said ‘Tuca’.

Herediano’s artificial pitch is a drawback.

“Yes, it’s a drawback because we’re not used to it. It’s like the majority of teams when we go to Tijuana, adapting isn’t easy, it gives them a slight advantage, but I hope my group will adapt as quickly as possible in the game so as to nip this issue in the bud.”

The tale of the Concacaf giant has ended.

“This tale of the giant ended several years ago. There aren’t any giants here, none at all. There are two professional teams from two different countries who are going to compete against each other. As long as Mexico carries on making an issue out of a situation that doesn’t exist, it’s creating negative pressure and it’s always the same: if you win, it’s because winning was tour obligation and if you lose, they slaughter you. We mustn’t forget that football has evolved worldwide.”

The offense needs to improve.

“Of course they need to improve because of the number of goals we’ve scored so far, which isn’t the figure we were hoping for. Nevertheless, I think I have a capable group who will go out to do their best work.”

Pachuca will be a challenging opponent.

“Pachuca is the current Champion. We played against them six weeks ago and managed to control all of this (the effectiveness in the opponent’s goal) and I hope that in the next match (…) we’ll be able to counteract them and take control”.

The internal competition at Tigres is considerable.- Jürgen Damm

ZUAZUA | Wednesday, August 10, 2016.- The high level of competition generated amongst all the members of the Tigres team, resulting from the top quality of each and every player in the squad, is making everyone give 100 percent in their pursuit of a spot on the starting team, assured the midfielder, Jürgen Damm.

“The team has gone from less to more and I think that right now it’s getting things right. It’s been performing very well, (…) we’ve played without Guido, with Lucas Zelarayán, without André and the team has held its own, which means that things are going well, that whichever player goes on or comes off is ready to play, and that’s what’s important.

“The competition being generated within the tea, is highly significant. There are a lot of players, especially on the flanks, so in this sense I’m also fully focused on working doubly hard to earn a spot and get back on the starting team like I did last year with ‘Tuca’ and, of course, that gives you the plus of being taken into consideration for the National Team and competing in major tournaments.”

He defines Tigres’ strength.

“I don’t think it’s just the work of the defense. All eleven of us work toward avoiding any goals against and toward scoring goals. From both ends to the center forward, which is André’s position, we are all responsible for marking, helping the defense and, naturally, to score goals. So, I think that conceding zero goals in five matches (including the Champion of Champions) is extraordinary”.

Concacaf is a thorn in the team’s side.

“Yes, I think missing out on the Club World Cup was very painful for all of us, losing a final against América was painful, but a new opportunity lies in wait for us and we have to make the most of it.

Major Mexican teams are competing, such as Monterrey, Pachuca, so it will be a fantastic tournament. We know that the US teams are putting a great deal of pressure on, so we have to try to do our very best to reach the final phase, participate in the Final again and achieve the championship, so Tigres can participate for the very first time in such a key tournament as the Club World Cup.”

He’s working to regain his physical and football level.

“I feel very blessed for all the opportunities I’ve had, for being in Tigres, because I’ve always been playing, for me, with the best two managers in history, ‘profe Meza’ and ‘Tuca’. Luckily, they have appreciated my work, for which I am extremely grateful. There are always going to be injuries in football, there are always things that prevent you from playing and you have to see all of this as a learning opportunity.”

Toluca

“I think that Toluca has always had a very good playing system. Now Cristante, who is on icon of the team, is coming. We know that he’s worked there for a long time and knows the players inside and out. I think the players are committed to the manager and want to win all the matches they can. We know it won’t be an easy match, especially because of the time. 12 noon is difficult, particularly in the stadium where we’ll be playing. We know Toluca will be a very difficult opponent.”

Guido acknowledges Tigres’s fine performance

ZUAZUA | Tuesday, August 9, 2016.- In addition to the results Tigres has obtained so far in the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura), the team’s fine performance is what’s most important, particularly in the last match against Jaguares, assured Guido Pizarro, defensive midfielder for the felines.

“For us it’s always going to be important (conceding zero goals), but what’s more important, for Saturday’s match, is the performance and goal opportunities we create against our rival team. If we tie with Atlas, I think the feeling we’ll take away from that match, apart from sustaining zero goals against, is that we haven’t played well, that we haven’t generated enough goal opportunities, so, this has been a pleasing weekend for me, especially regarding our performance, since at times we played well and generated several goal opportunities, which is what matters for us,” the Argentinian explained.

Appreciation for the solid defense

“In particular, especially to reassure the fans, they should play fluently, creating opportunities as they did on Saturday. But, as I recently said, the team’s performance is more important than the zero. If we play again as we know best, we’ll surely have a chance.”

The optimal level hasn’t yet been reached.

“There’s a long way to go until we reach our optimal level. As I said, the other day we played well at times, we followed up well three quarters forward, and not so well at others. We just need to fine-tune specific details of the opportunities we generate and not suffer too much or try to end the match as soon as possible, and then carry on with that solidity, endeavoring to avoid giving away opportunities to the other team.”

He knows they’ll have to keep an eye on Sinha.

“(Toluca) has got Sinha who’s a fantastic player with an amazing track record. We’ll have to be very careful to not let him play, to try to take control of the match. If we don’t let him create as many opportunities as he did against Toluca, or generate plays, we’ll surely have a chance. This will be a key match. They’ve just beaten the table leader, the last champion, so we’ll undoubtedly have to play our best in order to beat them.”

It won’t matter who plays.

“The manager decides who’s going to play, but I think that ‘Gringo’ (Torres) is a great footballer. He’s been here for a long time and knows what the manager and the team want. Both he and ‘Chino’ (Zelarayán) are doing a good job and the other day, when Dueñas came on, he played a good second half.  We’ve carried on along the same lines, which is important. Regardless of who plays, the team has a game pattern that goes beyond names, and without doubt, whoever plays will do their very best.”

A second win for Tigres who remain unbeaten

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Saturday, August 6, 2016.- Tigres is celebrating their second consecutive victory, remains unbeaten and André-Pierre Gignac continues with his scoring streak, not just in the League, but also against the Chiapas Jaguares.

Although the final score was 1-0, it could have been much higher, proving that Ricardo Ferretti’s team appears to be on the right track.

Tigres now has 8 points, the outcome of two ties and two wins, and maintained once more zero goals conceded, totaling 360 minutes without knowing what a goal against feels like. The felines are gradually moving up in the table and positioning themselves in a far more comfortable spot on route to the Playoffs.

INITIAL APPROACH

Ricardo Ferretti repeated the lineup from day 3’s match against América, with José Francisco ‘Gringo’ Torres side-by-side midfield with Guido Pizarro; Lucas Zelarayán as an attacking midfielder; and Alberto Acosta in the defense, covering the left flank.

Tigres started with a great deal of movement in the midfield, playing far more vertically with clearances by ‘Gringo’ Torres, and with ‘Chino’ Zelarayán from the 9 position presenting far more danger in the Jaguares’ defensive zone.

The visiting team played with a 4-4-2 formation at first, though they changed it to a 4-5-1 at times to offset the ball passes by the felines from San Nicolás.

FIRST HALF

Tigres put on the pressure right from the start. Javier Aquino looked very keen, often running effortlessly from the left to the center of the field. In fact, in the first few minutes he attempted a mid-range shot that forced the Chiapas goalie to stretch out to send the ball to a corner.

At minute 30, André-Pierre Gignac received a deep ball fromn ‘Chino’ Zelarayán, leaving him alone in front of the Chiapas goal, but his shot smashed into the post and although he tried again with the rebound, a defense came to the rescue.

The UANL Tigres were the better team across the first 45 minutes, but just needed to score. They made the goalkeeper work hard and constantly kept the Chiapas defense on their toes with their passes and, at the 39-minute mark, the referee missed a foul on ‘Chuco’ Sosa that seemed to be a penalty.

SECOND HALF

Ricardo Ferretti moved his men around from the start of the second half, sending Jesús Dueñas on to replace José Torres, putting him in the same midfield position, supporting recovery and clearances.

Five minutes into the second half, André-Pierre scored a goal, taking advantage of a fast throw-in by Aquino.

‘Tuca’ decided to make two changes, taking Zelarayán and Sosa off, and replacing them with Julián Quiñones and Luis Quiñones, seeking to increase the speed of the felines’ attacks, although at times it seemed that the hosts were losing control midfield.

The match ended 1-0, though Tigres could have scored even more if they had played with a little more finesse.

#TIGREDATO

#TigreDato @10APG has now scored 7 goals against Jaguares since his arrival in Mexico, so this is still the team he has scored most against in this country.

GOALS:

Tigres:

1-0 (55’) Gignac in a shot from outside the box that blasted into the back of the Chiapas net close to the right post. Everything started with a fast throw-in in which Aquino took advantage of a breakaway that left the French player on his own.

LINEUPS:

Tigres: Nahuel Guzmán; Israel Jiménez, Hugo Ayala, Juninho and Alberto Acosta; Guido Pizarro, José Torres (Jesús Dueñas 46’), Javier Aquino and Lucas Zelarayán (Luis Quiñones 79’); Ismael Sosa (Julián Quiñones 79’) and André-Pierre Gignac

Jaguares: Óscar Jiménez; Bruno Pereira, Brayan Angulo, Juan Patiño and Luis Venegas; Dieter Villalpando (Javier Orozco 57’), Diego de la Torre, Egidio Arévalo and Jesús Escoboza; Luis Mendoza (José Ayoví 64’) and Vanderley Dias (Martín Zúñiga 90’)

Referee: Miguel Ángel Chacón Viveros

YELLOW CARDS:

Tigres: Ismael Sosa (40’) and Jesús Dueñas (82’)

Jaguares: None

RED CARDS:

None

The goal is to remain undefeated and achieve the first home win

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Friday, August 5, 2016.- Tigres is still undefeated at the start of the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) and although they have enjoyed their first victory in the tournament as a visitor, they still have one task pending, to win their first match at the Universitario Stadium.

And they’ll do it against Chiapas, a rival Tigres has beaten in their first four face-offs in the League and Playoffs. Moreover, they have found their nemesis in André-Pierre Gignac, who has scored in each of their matches and, in fact, Jaguares is the team he has got most goals against in Mexico.

The UANL team come to this match with five points, the outcome of one victory and two ties, and, even better, so far they haven’t conceded a single goal, something that has been highly valued by their manager Ricardo Ferretti and the players themselves, as a symbol of the order they are accomplishing on the pitch.

Tigres’ scoring touch was awakened last weekend against América, where the best player of the 2015-2016 season, the French footballer Gignac, scored a goal. This Saturday he faces the team he has scored most against since he started in the Mexican League: the Jaguares have received 6 goals from the striker, 4 in the regular season and 2 in the Playoffs.

In addition, the felines are in sixth place on the General Table and Chiapas in 12th, with just three points so far in the 2016 Apertura, having lost their first two matches and won the third.

This Saturday, all the Incomparable Ones who attend the match in the Universitario will enjoy the new seats in the north and south stands, in the first phase of renovation.

HEAD-TO-HEAD STATISTICS AGAINST CHIAPAS

TEAMGPGWGDGLGFGADIFF.
TIGRES30131164732+15
CHIAPAS30611133247-15

HEAD-TO-HEAD STATISTICS AT THE UNIVERSITARIO

TEAMGPGWGDGLGFGADIFF.
TIGRES156631913+6
CHIAPAS153661319-6

We can’t be overconfident.- Jürgen Damm

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Wednesday, August 3, 2016.- Tigres needs to keep calm and not be overconfident just because of their victory against América in the Azteca Stadium, assured the felines’ player, Jürgen Damm.

“Not being overconfident is crucial. We played a good match against América, but now we need to turn the page. We know that Tigres always has to go out to win, especially at home, even though the teams come here to box us in, which is what they’ve been doing for several seasons and at times it makes things difficult for us, but we have to be smart and have a variety of plays up our sleeves for when this happens.”

Beating Jaguares would be a catapult

“From now on, we have to keep on adding points three by three, reaching the top three or four places on the table, and I think that’s the dream of everyone in the club, qualifying for the playoffs properly, not at the last minute, but several fixtures before classification and seeking those top spots, obviously also playing well, playing the way the ‘Profe’ (Tigres’ manager) wants, making people happy, our fans who support us constantly and always come to the stadium.”

Maintaining zero goals conceded is very important

“Something that’s very important is that we have maintained zero goals conceded since the Champion of Champions against Pachuca. No one has scored against us, which is important, as is André and Sosa starting to score goals. We know the stature and class of these players; all they needed was to get their first goal.”

He hopes to regain his position

“There’s a lot of new competition in the team. The ‘Profe’ has so many players to choose from, so, obviously, we all need to work 100% in every single training session and in the minutes we play in the matches or where the ‘Profe’ needs us to make the most of them. Of course, it’s not easy. Every single member of the squad wants to play and needs to work very hard in order to regain a position in the starting eleven.”

Guido Pizarro highlights Tigres’ solid defense

ZUAZUA | Tuesday, August 2, 2016.- The victory over Águilas has been a source of great satisfaction for all the members of Club Tigres, but Guido Pizarro, the felines’ defensive midfielder, specifically highlighted the amazing work of the defense, which hasn’t conceded a single goal, which means that so far the team is unbeaten.

“The fact that they haven’t scored against us (is remarkable), we’re still unbeaten, although our opponents have been close they’ve had no clear opportunities. This speaks of the fine defensive performance, though we know we have to continue to improve, that our performance improved drastically compared to the first two fixtures, but I think there’s still room for improvement.  So, hopefully, playing at home on Saturday, let’s improve even more and earn those three points at home, which is crucial.”

We mustn’t be overconfident after our victory over América

“We know what we are aiming for. Home points are crucial and I think that in the last match at the Universitario Stadium (Uni), we weren’t quite up to scratch, so let’s hope Tigres’ performance will improve. We know it will be different because of the team we’ll be facing and how they play here as if they were at home, but we have to overcome this and play well.”

The reinforcements have settled in and are stronger than ever

“I think so (it’s a better team now), I think we have more variety. We practically have two first-rate teams, as could be seen in the last game’s substitutions. They raised the team’s level right to the end, which was very important, since two competitions are coming up. We start in the Champions League next week, which is also very important, so let’s hope we’ll be available for the manager, firstly to raise the team’s level and, secondly, to contribute with a view to the championships.”

Gignac seems at home with Tigres

“André is an international player, with a great track record and is undoubtedly one of the names on the list for that team (Barcelona), as well as many others. He’s calm, very eager and fully focused on Tigres. I hope we’ve made him feel at home and he’ll be able to continue with his fine performance. Later on, destiny will say whether he goes to the other team or stays with us, where he is more than welcome.”

“What he has shown since he arrived is that he’s a very well-balanced, humble person, with both feet firmly on the ground and he will no doubt continue to be like this, always striving to do his best.”

Tigres hasn’t reached their level yet.- ‘Tuca’ Ferretti

ZUAZUA | Monday, August 1, 2016.- Ricardo Ferretti was pleased with his team’s performance in the Águilas match. Nevertheless, he asked for moderation in praising the 0-3 triumph, urging Tigres to keep calm and level-headed, since there is still plenty of room for improvement.

WE NEED TO BE LEVEL-HEADED

“We must be sensible, level-headed, not believe everything, as you’ve just mentioned. Before the match against América, there was a certain degree of pressure, criticisms, comments, and now, post-match, suddenly it’s all gone to the other extreme. I think we should always be balanced, level-headed.

“So, we have to carry on working, improve many things. Each match is different and there’s a long road ahead of us. Obviously a victory gives us confidence, because that always happens with victories.”

RECAP OF THE MATCH AGAINST AMÉRICA

“It was an interesting match. In the first half, I think we played a competent game; we were able to counteract a team that has been doing very well and we’re delighted to get these points, though I should also like to emphasize that we have maintained zero goals conceded. We received a single yellow card and none of our players were sent off. Our ball possession was good and in the second half, with an extra player, we managed to handle the situation adequately.

“The fact that we scored our first goal of the season takes a lot of the pressure off, especially from some of the forwards, which is quite normal.”

TIGRES HASN’T REACHED THE TARGET LEVEL YET

“I think we got things right, but there’s still a lot of room for improvement, several details, as I always say. First I look at the positive things, of which there are quite a few, but there are also aspects that need to be improved, though today might not be the day to start on them. However, tomorrow will be an arduous day for them – they’ll be working very hard, seeking to reach our goal of improving on a daily basis.”.

ARE YOU SATISFIED WITH THE WORK OF PLAYERS LIKE ACOSTA AND ‘GRINGO’ TORRES

“I don’t like talking about individuals, but with the help of their teammates and their own personal capacity I don’t think (any of the absences) was noticeable, especially when you win, which makes you forget quite a bit. I held a meeting with the group a couple of weeks ago and told them that any one of them could be on the starting team. I’m blessed to be able to trust all my players and I know that every single one of them will do his best.”

THE MEDICAL STATUS OF RIVAS AND DAMIÁN

“Both of them are at the physical-athletic stage, they’ve moved on to professor (Guillermo) Orta and hopefully this week they’ll overcome any injuries, any pain and there won’t be any relapses. They should be ready to play by next week.”

THE GIGNAC RUMORS

“It’s a rumor that was printed in a Catalan newspaper, but as far as I know, the respective directors haven’t been in touch with each other. They might say that André is on a list, he might be first, second, third, fourth, fifth, I doubt there are more than five. In fact, we think it’s fantastic that he’s on this list for one of the greatest teams in the world.

“I believe that André once said that if he ever left Tigres he’d like to go to Barcelona, or Real Madrid, or Bayern, or maybe even Manchester, so that’s four plus us, which makes five … That just shows what a great institution we are! Because (…) we are the ones who have André.”

A superb triumph for Tigres in the Azteca Stadium

CIUDAD DE MÉXICO | Saturday, July 30, 2016.- The tiger awakened and controlled the host, the América Águilas, achieving both their first victory and first goal of the tournament. The goals scored by Javier Aquino, André-Pierre Gignac and Ismael Sosa can simply be labeled as superb.

Tigres has won all of the last three League matches against Águilas, but, this time, their triumph means that Ricardo Ferretti’s boys have a total of five points and are unbeaten so far in the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura).

INITIAL APPROACH

Absences by Jorge Torres Nilo and Jesús Dueñas for this match against Águilas, gave José Francisco ‘Gringo’ Torres the chance to play in the defense and form a duo in the area with Guido Pizarro.

Damián Álvarez was ruled out due to injury, and replaced by Lucas ‘Chino’ Zelarayán in the midfield, who, together with Javier Aquino, constantly fed balls to André-Pierre Gignac and Ismael Sosa.

Tigres dominated the game right from the start and sought their opponent’s goal time after time, taking advantage of a key weapon: mid-range shots, though not with a great deal of success.

FIRST HALF

The felines were in no way intimidated by the Azteca Stadium, putting on the pressure right from the kickoff and seeking the opponent’s goal with mid-range shots, that went wide of the goal defended by Hugo González.

Just as Tigres was pressuring the most, two fouls were committed outside América’s area, a situation taken advantage of by Juninho to send the ball into the goalie’s hands, with a shot that was made difficult by its effect.

Soon after, at the 37-minute mark, a superb goal was scored by Aquino, who took advantage of an opportunity from the left flank and sent the ball into the goal, with a shot known as a chip that smashed into the left post and then into the back of the net.

In injury time, América was left with 10 men after Renato Ibarra imprudently made contact with the center forward Juninho, earning himself a red card.

SECOND HALF

After Ibarra was sent off at the end of the first half, the felines gained even further control of the match, putting on the pressure in América’s territory, endeavoring to take the ball of the opponent as soon as possible.

Aquino continued to tear his opponents to shreds on the left flank, but it was Gignac who appeared with a ball crossed from the right to simply lob the ball over González, the goalkeeper, and score his first goal of the Apertura 2016, and fourth in five games against Águilas.

The felines were relentless until the very end; even without Aquino, Acosta, who was injured, or Zelarayán, the team dominated the match end to end.  Luis Quiñones came on and the Colombian set the ball up for Sosa, who entered the zone, dribbled past the defense and the goalkeeper, crossing the ball to score the third goal of the match.

Tigres remains unbeaten after obtaining this well-deserved victory, moving them up towards the top positions of the table with 5 points.

#TIGREDATO

In the last three matches against América, Tigres has scored 8 goals and received just one goal against, Of these 8 goals, 3 were scored by André-Pierre Gignac.

GOALS:

Tigres:

0-1 (37’) Superb goal by Javier Aquino from the left, slamming the ball into the left post and on the rebound into the back of the net.

0-2 (59’) Fantastic goal by André-Pierre Gignac, chipping the ball past the goalkeeper to give the felines a 2-0 lead.

0-3 (93’) Ismael Sosa shook off the opponents in the box and sent a cross shot past the goalie to give Tigres their third goal.

LINEUPS:

América: Hugo González; Paul Aguilar, Pablo Aguilar, Bruno Valdez and Osmar Mares; Renato Ibarra, José Guerrero (Jesús Moreno 84’), Osvaldo Martínez and Rubens Sambueza; Darwin Quintero (William da Silva 60’) and Silvio Romero

Tigres: Nahuel Guzmán; Israel Jiménez, Hugo Ayala, Juninho and Alberto Acosta (Manuel Viniegra 76’); Guido Pizarro, José Torres, Javier Aquino (Luis Quiñones 84’) and Lucas Zelarayán (Jürgen Damm 60’); Ismael Sosa and André-Pierre Gignac

Referee: Jorge Isaac Rojas

YELLOW CARDS:

América: None

Tigres: Ismael Sosa (55’) and Alberto Acosta (69’)

RED CARDS:

América: Renato Ibarra (46’)

América vs. Tigres will be an entertaining, end-to-end match.- Nahuel

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Thursday, July 28, 2016.- Matches against the América Águilas are usually attractive and turn out to be entertaining and end to end, affirmed the Tigres goalkeeper, Nahuel Guzmán, who clarified that this weekend’s game is unlikely to be any different, especially as the felines are hoping to achieve their first victory of the season at the Azteca Stadium.

“We are playing away (at the Azteca Stadium) in search of the first victory of the tournament on a pitch that is difficult, but also familiar to us, and we earned three points there last season, in similar circumstances I believe, at the beginning of the tournament.

“We have played against this opponent quite often recently; we know each other and these matches are often entertaining. So, it’s not a rival that waits for us, but often plays on the same level and I’m imagining a match with these characteristics, entertaining, end to end, with opportunities and the desire to win three points, while never forgetting the opponent and the field we will be facing,” ‘Patón’ explained.

The Argentine acknowledged that after so many matches against Águilas, they have fully identified how this Saturday’s rival plays and what they have to do to stay ahead.

“We know how América plays and how we have to play this sort of matches, with patience, calmly, knowing that they will be able to take advantage of playing at home. They put on the pressure, have powerful players from the midfield forwards, who are fast, agile and when we have the ball, which is the best game for us, and when we have to defend because the opponent is overcoming us, we have to keep together in the middle and three-quarters of the field, making sure there are no spaces left open,” he stated.

The reporters asked ‘Patón’ how he felt about reaching 40 consecutive matches playing entire matches as a regular starter, and he commented that this is a statistic that makes him very happy because it reflects his constancy and the trust the manager has placed in him.

“Starting is important, the manager’s trust is important. These circumstances offer me the chance to compete and share this position with two great goalkeepers and fantastic individuals. I think that any of us who has to defend our goal is prepared to do so, so the starting decision is usually up to the manager. I’m happy because playing is good for me, starting is good for me. I’ve spent quite a while on the bench, so I’m enjoying this moment,” he said.

We want to show we’re made for great things in the América match

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Wednesday, July 27, 2016.- The match against the América Águilas will offer the ideal opportunity for Tigres to show in the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) that they are out to win the League title and have one of the best squads in Mexico, affirmed the feline player, Jürgen Damm.

“There’ll be no excuse this Saturday. We have to play well in this match. It’s at a good time, a good field, a fine scenario and an opponent who will most certainly will fight hard. We know that América always puts the pressure on, always attacks and that it will be a good match, in which we have to prove that we have the wherewithal to be champions and one of the best squads in Mexico,” the Tigres midfielder commented.

Damm praised the Águilas’ squad and performance, and ranked them as a first-rate team. However, he explained that such a fantastic rival always offers a benchmark for any team to see how they are doing.

“I think that playing against teams like América is always important. We’ll be taking this match very seriously, knowing that we need the three points, to score goals and the team has to start to play well in order to reach the top spots in the table. We have the capacity to be a major team, which is one of the goals we set at the start of the tournament, to be ranked in the top three places and fight for the championship,” affirmed the player of German descent.

Jürgen played again last weekend with the felines’ Under-20 team against Atlas for 70 minutes, after a long recovery period. He is ready to play if the manager, Ricardo Ferretti, needs him for the match against América.

The midfielder asked people to be patient with the André-Pierre Gignac-Ismael Sosa duo, because they only played the first few minutes together and he assured that once they have got used to each other, the goals will come.

“It was the first match with Sosa and Gignac up front. They just need to understand each other a bit better, but sooner or later the goals will arrive. I have a feeling it will be a fantastic match there (in the Azteca Stadium) and we’ll be bringing back three points, which we obviously need to lift the team’s spirits, add on three more points to our total and move up to the top spots in the table,” he stated.

Let’s hope we’ll see a new Tigres against América.- Guido Pizarro

ZUAZUA | Tuesday, July 26, 2016.- For the match against América this Saturday, Guido Pizarro, a defensive midfielder, wants to see a new Tigres, a team that improves its performance and allows its forwards to generate more opportunities in front of the opponent’s goal.

The Argentine midfielder without a doubt accepts that he’s not satisfied with what the team has shown so far and thinks, like his manager, that there is still plenty of room for improvement, especially regarding the overall performance. He is sure that the Águilas match will offer a fine opportunity to do this and earn three points.

“We’ll have to improve our performance so that the forwards will have clearer opportunities or a more connected attack, all of which goes hand in hand with the performance. Having more strikers doesn’t necessarily translate into more goals, but they are doing well (the reinforcements), very committed, everyone wants to win a place and let’s hope that on Saturday we’ll see a new Tigres, see good things,” the ‘Conde’ said.

Pizarro commented that the match against América is crucial given the recent history between the two teams, but, in particular, because of their fine reputation and the quality of their players, although he hopes that the felines will achieve their first victory of the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) against Águilas with a new face.

“We know that this is a crucial match for winning the first three points and let’s hope we can. It’s not an easy game, but we have good players who have fitted in well and we hope to improve our performance, go back to what we used to do and achieve those three points.

“Striving to improve our performance to play good football, to be the protagonist, to play as a team and, if we play well and work well together as a team, I think we’ll have a better chance,” he commented.

Tigres has already won the respect of Mexican football.- Nahuel

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Thursday, July 20, 2016.-Tigres is a club that has been revaluated in every sense and, today, in Mexican football it is respected for its constant presence in finals and the titles it has achieved, stated the goalkeeper, Nahuel Guzmán.

The goalie is also aware that this respect will only be maintained if positive results are obtained match after match.

“Recently, we have been a rival to beat. Many teams, and luckily this has been reflected in the games, have changed their style or form (of play) whenever they face us, (…) and in some way this translates into respect.

“Being a rival to beat is something you have to earn; being a top team that wants to fight for important things has to be earned match by match, getting the results and proving on the field that the Tigres players measure up; and the team wants to be the protagonist and is capable of meeting expectations, of being a rival to beat,” expressed the Argentinian.

‘Patón’ knows that the team’s success this season depends largely on his and his teammates’ performance on the field, although he clarified that the squad that was formed for this tournament has a wealth of options, as well the first-rate players that have recently joined the team, making it even stronger.

“Let’s hope we’ll find an identity, let’s hope we can be a team on the pitch, without depending on individualities. However, we had a good team and the new players have come to reinforce it, so it will be best to carry on along this path. The new players have to adapt and be committed to collaborating, contributing so that this Tigres can carry on being a great team.

“Each player who arrives at the club knows what to expect, and anyone who isn’t fully aware will gradually find out that nowadays Tigres is a major club, an influential club, which has reached the top on the basis of achievements, results or by fighting for titles.  I think that each new player knows what sort of club he is joining or is joining Tigres because he is equal to the task,” the goalkeeper said.

Guzmán also recalled that almost two years have gone by since he joined the felines, which is something that makes him very happy. He is satisfied with his achievements and has also adapted well to the city and the environment, and is quite sure about what has left a lasting mark during this time.

“Time will go by, players will come and go, and you know that you had the opportunity to participate in the star embroidered on the crest and that’s what leaves a lasting mark. And, obviously, the way in which we achieved that moment, playing what we love best and making a good impression,” he stated.

Tuca’ hopes the Gignac-Sosa duo will be productive

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, July 18, 2016.- With the return of André-Pierre Gignac to the Tigres training sessions, the felines’ manager, Ricardo Ferretti, hopes that the French footballer will form a productive duo together with the new Argentine player, Ismael Sosa, which will bear fruit for the team in the future.

This is how the Brazilian helmsman responded to the press at the end of the training session in the Universitario Stadium, when he was asked whether the Gignac-Sosa duo would be one of the most feared in Mexican football.

“We’ll have to see when André arrives – he should be joining us by tomorrow (Tuesday). The two players, as well as the entire squad, need to adapt to each other. Let’s see how they get along. We all think that the possibility of two first-rate players making a good fit should be easier, but it really all depends on them (…).

“I hope that André and Sosa get along not only with each other, but also with the entire team. It shouldn’t be a problem and we are going to work towards that and then say that they will be the (most feared) duo… Actually, I hope that they will be a productive duo of forwards. André is a top goal scorer and Sosa is a great scorer, which is why the directors worked hard to assure these two players and all the others,” said ‘Tuca’.

He was also asked about the possible arrival of one more reinforcement to the team, and ‘Tuca’ affirmed that he is satisfied with the squad as it is right now, but the directors will exhaust all the options existing until the end of August, the date on which registrations close on an international level.

“If a player comes to this institution, it has to be someone who will contribute, who will always come as a quote, unquote, starter. Right now, I’m satisfied with what I’ve got, but the directors are still doing their job and we have until the end of August to find someone. It might happen, but if it doesn’t, I think we have a good team for competing in both the League and the Cup (Concacaf Champions)”, explained the manager.

‘Tuca’ also discussed what happened on the pitch last Sunday in Torreón, where Tigres achieved a goalless draw against Santos, and said that the team’s performance was adequate, although there is room for improvement. However, he emphasized that the first fixture produced one point for the team.

“At times the performance was good and at other times it could have been better, like everything in life. I think that for the first match, they played adequately and that as the dates go by, the team will reach a higher level, (…) at least we’ve improved one thing – last season we still had zero points by the third fixture and now we already have one, which is an improvement,” he said with a smile.

Tigres win their first point of the season

TORREÓN, July 17.- In the start of the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura), the UANL Tigres earned one point with a goalless draw against Santos de la Laguna.
The game got to a slow start, although in the very first minute Nahuel Guzmán received a warning from Emiliano Armenteros, whose shot went straight into the Argentine’s hands.
Without André-Pierre Gignac, who is still absent after participating in Euro 2016, and without Guido Pizarro, who is suspended after being sent off in the Champion of Champions match, our team strove to play one on one, and at times was in control.
Manuel Viniegra was given the first opportunity by Tuca to replace Pizarro, playing well together with Jesús Dueñas, the other defense.
At the 18-minute mark, Ismael Sosa escaped down the right flank, overcoming a defender and was practically in the box when his cross was blocked by Agustín Marchesin before Zelarayán could finish.
Santos responded with a volley by Freddy Hinestroza, smashing the ball into the left-hand post to be deflected by the goalkeeper. Nahuel’s goal was saved by tenths of an inch.
Tigres endeavored to impose its ball control style and at the 29th minute, Sosa was back in the area, this time with a shot that went wide of the right-hand post, just grazing the net.
The second half was being dominated by Santos who was in possession of the ball and getting closer to Nahuel with greater confidence, although they lacked clarity when it came to finishing.
At minute 61, the Torreón team came close to scoring again, when Jonathan Rodríguez was in control of the ball in the area, but his powerful, sharp shot smashed into Nahuel’s left post.
Ten minutes later, Israel Jiménez, with a fine offensive move, sent a fine high shot from the outskirts of the box, that Marchesin only just managed to save. Tigres was knocking on its opponent’s door.
Then, the duo formed by Mejía Barón and Tuca Ferretti decided to make two changes at the same time, taking Zelarayan and Aquino off, replacing them with Fernando Fernández and Luis Quiñones, to give the offensive side greater speed.
At 80’, Sosa scored, but his goal was disallowed for offside. Our team was ready to go even further.
Sosa was a danger once more, when at the 86th minute he escaped down the center, getting away from a defender, but one-on-one with Marchesin he lost a clear goal opportunity.
The local team came back with a header by Molina, sending the ball crashing into Nahuel’s crossbar. Now it was Tigres’ turn to be saved.
In the end, the two teams earned one point each in their first 2016 Apertura match.

LINE-UP
SANTOS:  Agustín Marchesin; José Abella, Jesús Molina, Diego de Buen (Martín Bravo 78’), Bryan Rabello (Walter Sandoval 66’), Jonathan Rodríguez, Néstor Araujo, Freddy Hinestroza (Ulises Dávila 78’), Jorge Flores, Emiliano Armenteros and Carlos Izquierdoz.
TIGRES: Nahuel Guzmán; Israel Jiménez, Juninho, Hugo Ayala, Jorge Torres Nilo, Manuel Viniegra, Jesús Dueñas, Javier Aquino (Luis Quiñones 66’), Lucas Zelarayan (Fernando Fernández 66’), Damián Álvarez (Francisco Torres 88’) and Ismael Sosa.

Zelarayán is focusing on earning himself a starting spot with Tigres

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Friday, July 15, 2016.- The Argentine Lucas Zelarayán is aware of the fierce internal competition in Tigres owing to the top-notch squad that has been formed. However, although he knows that the manager Ricardo Ferretti will now be having quite a problem to choose, he is confident that he will be part of the starting eleven.

“Competition is intense here at Tigres. There are great players, a lot of foreigners and a lot of Mexicans, but the competition is always healthy and good, so Tuca has quite a problem with so many good footballers eager to play, and I hope I will be in the starting lineup,” indicated the Argentine player.

‘Chino’, as he is known, acknowledged that in his first tournament with the felines he found it hard to adapt to the football practiced in Mexico, as well as to the climate and altitude issues. In addition, he found in Tigres a very solid team that had kept on the forwards who were with the team when they won the 2015 Summer Tournament (Apertura) League Title.

“It was quite hard for me to adapt, particularly after an injury sustained in the first match against Toluca that made it difficult for me to come back. Those two months were challenging as I was able to play but was in pain, which affected me above all in the first two or three matches, then the altitude in Querétaro and again in Toluca. I found it difficult to adapt.

“The base team already existed, with André (Pierre Gignac) and Rafa (Sobis), who were doing a fantastic job. It was a team that had just been Champions and joining them was difficult. Now, today, I think we are all competing on an equal level and I’m confident I will be in the starting 11,” the player said.

Regarding this Sunday’s match against Santos, with which Tigres will be initiating its participation in the 2016 Apertura, he praised the work of the Torreón team’s manager, Luis Zubeldía, including his posts in Argentina. However, he said that he hopes that everything they have practiced this week will be reflected positively on the pitch in order to earn tree points in the very first fixture.

“I think Santos is a great team, with great players, a great technical staff. I’ve seen him (the manager) a lot in Argentina and all his teams play extremely well, and I’m talking about Luis (Zubeldía). It is a great team and the last match we played on their pitch was rather difficult for us and I hope we play the match we’ve been practicing all week. We’re feeling confident and know that a triumph would get us off to a flying start,” ‘Chino’ said.

Tigres is committed to making the fans happy.- ‘Tuca’ Ferretti

ZUAZUA | Tuesday, July 12, 2016.- The second half of the year got off to a good start for Tigres with their victory in the Champion of Champions, said Ricardo Ferretti. Nevertheless, the manager explained that the team’s objective is and always will be winning titles to give the fans the greatest satisfaction possible.

‘Tuca’ was pleased with what they have achieved so far, but made it quite clear that in a team like Tigres the standard is always set very high, since no one can afford to rest on their laurels. On the contrary, they are facing 17 fixtures in the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) in which their aim is to qualify, and qualify well, in order to fight for yet another championship.

“The work, the task of the ‘Ingeniero’ (Alejandro Rodríguez) and Miguel Garza is to provide the greatest support regarding the players, while everyone (on the team) is committed to the task of doing our very best and making our fans as happy as possible.

“Tigres, a few years ago, was going through a difficult time, and I’ve been with them through part of this. Right now, we are enjoying major achievements, but that doesn’t mean we can rest on our laurels. On the contrary, it means we have to continue to fight, to work because the very least we can do is to respond on the field, giving everything we’ve got to our amazing fans who never fail in their support,” the manager commented.

Regarding the possible absentees in the team for the start of the tournament on Sunday in Torreón, Ferretti reported that Damián Álvarez started training normally today after an injury in the Pachuca match, while he decided that it would be better for Israel Jiménez to wait until tomorrow so he can check his evolution and determine whether or not he is ready.

Meanwhile, Jürgen Damm has already started training with the team, focusing on the physical and technical-tactical aspects, although he mentioned that it would be too soon for him to play this weekend since he is only just being reincorporated into the group.

Regarding Guido Pizarro and his red card in the game against Tuzos on Sunday, he declared that he thought it was unfair and hopes that the Disciplinary Committee will review this decision and withdraw the suspension.

In relation to the reincorporation of André-Pierre Gignac to the team’s discipline, he clarified that they are in discussions with the French player to agree on an exact date, in view of the fact that he hasn’t had a holiday, as he joined his National Team straight away after finishing the activities with Tigres in the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura), and also that he needs to recover his emotionally.

There are variations in this Tigres.- Nahuel Guzmán

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Thursday, July 7, 2016.- The new players who have arrived at Tigres for the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) will equip the team with more variation, making it a more talented squad with a better chance for success, is the viewpoint of Nahuel Guzmán, the felines’ goalkeeper. He added that the team’s current game base will be key to achieving this.

“We will undoubtedly see variations (for this tournament); there are new players who will contribute their quality and essence, who will contribute to a team that has a foundation in football, that has ideas for play, and, as I always say, some might prefer it and others not so much, but its seems that in the past couple of years there has been an idea for play that has produced results,” the goalie explained.

‘Patón’ praised the arrival of a man like Ismael Sosa, considering that ‘Chuco’, a forward, is one of the greatest revelations in Mexican football who has a great deal to offer on the attack, since he has the ability to play in a variety of positions.

“New players have arrived for this. A new forward who was a revelation in the last championship, ‘Chuco’ Sosa, who offers variation, since he can play as 9, on the right flank and on the left. His physical capacity is just amazing.

“‘Chaka’ (Rodríguez), who I hadn’t actually met before, can also play in different positions, on the side or in the center. Let’s hope that all the new men will offer the manager different tools and can contribute to Tigres in the same way as they did in their former clubs,” the Argentine expressed.

Finally, Guzmán indicated that in a team like Tigres the bar is always set very high regarding the expectations for each tournament or title it competes in and hopes that this essence will be repeated in the Apertura 2016.

“Ever since we were champions and maybe even before, when we’d had the possibility of competing against América in the Final, we knew that the level of expectation is at a maximum, regarding the effort made by the club to assure that we are comfortable, acquiring the players requested by the manager, we have that responsibility and we must fulfill it, take it on, the bar has been set very high. This Tigres has reached the finals in several recent championships, been in the top spots, endeavoring to be a competitive, highly respected team, and we cannot lower this standard. I hope we can stay on this path of Tigres being a protagonist,” visualized ‘Patón’.

Tigres closes preparation with a draw against Correcaminos

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Saturday, July 2, 2016.- Tigres closed the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) preseason stage with a 1-1 draw against the Universidad Autónoma de Tamaulipas Correcaminos, and will now focus on the July 10 match in which they will compete for the first championship of the season against Pachuca, for the honor of being awarded the Champion of Champions title.

The felines arrived on Friday from their beach stage on the Riviera Maya, and this match against UAT allowed the Tigres manager, Ricardo Ferretti, to observe the squad as a whole, since he used different teams in each half to find the starting 11 for next Sunday.

INITIAL APPROACH

Tigres first and only formal practice for the Champion of Champions offered a format with some variations in comparison with the previous tournament. At times the felines had three forwards, Fernando Fernández in the center, accompanied by Ismael Sosa and Javier Aquino on the sides.

Guido Pizarro was placed as a constant defensive midfielder with two slightly less rigid wide midfielders, Jesús Dueñas and Lucas Zelarayán, backed by the overlapping runs from Israel Jiménez and Jorge Torres Nilo, although the players would rotate positions for a while, especially the forwards.

Enrique Palos was the goalkeeper, since Nahuel Guzmán won’t be arriving until Monday next week. Apart from ‘Patón’, who is on vacation, other absentees were André-Pierre Gignac, who is competing in the European Championship with his national team, and Jürgen Damm, Iván ‘Guty’ Estrada and Francisco Meza, who are all recovering from injuries.

FIRST HALF

The felines were just trying to settling in on the field, getting into position, when the Correcaminos player Pierre Ibarra, from a set-piece, surprised them by heading the ball home.

Tigres tried to gain possession of the ball, passing it more purposefully than their opponent, taking advantage at times of the formation with three forwards, but lacked depth and were unable to finish and score in the box.  The first half was portrayed by one team attempting and the other safeguarding its goal area, while endeavoring to take advantage of any dangerous counterattacks, including a leap in the area by Guido Pizarro to avoid a Correcaminos goal.

The felines were unable to rattle the rival goalie, with the most dangerous deflected shots coming from outside the area by Zelarayán, Sosa, Dueñas, Fernando and Aquino, as well as a free kick by Lucas that went over the net.

SECOND HALF

Ricardo Ferretti changed the entire team for the second half, in which the rest of the new players had the chance to display their talent. Miguel Herrera Equihua accompanied José Rivas in the center; Alberto Acosta and Luis ‘Chaka’ Rodríguez covered the left and right flanks respectively; while Luis Quiñones played as a right midfielder and Julián Quiñones as an attacker.

The team was extremely dynamic; Luis Quiñones, Espericueta and Acosta added a spark to the game and produced several opportunities to penetrate the box of the visiting team, who brought multiple platers down to their defensive area to avoid a goal by the felines at all costs.

Minute 64 saw the equalizer with a penalty shot taken by Espericueta and the team continued to attack enthusiastically, seeking the winning goal, but were blocked by the Tamaulipas team’s defense and goalkeeper, Jesús Gallardo.

#TIGREDATO

The Champion of Champions will be disputed on July 10 at the StubHub Center in Los Angeles by Tigres and Pachuca, the last two monarchs of Mexican football, to define who will be crowned as the top team of the 2015-2016 season.

GOALS:

0-1   CORRECAMINOS Min. 4.- Header by Pierre Ibarra from a corner, sending an impossible-to-save ball to the right of the goalkeeper Palos.

1-1 TIGRES Min. 64.- Jonathan Espericueta scored with a penalty, tricking the goalkeeper.

LINEUPS:

Tigres: Enrique Palos (Aarón Fernández 46’); Israel Jiménez (Luis Rodriguez 46’), Hugo Ayala (Miguel Herrera 46’), Juninho (José Rivas 46’) and Jorge Torres Nilo (Alberto Acosta 46’); Guido Pizarro (Manuel Viniegra 46’), Jesús Dueñas (José Torres 46’), Lucas Zelarayán (Damián Álvarez 46’); Javier Aquino (Luis Quiñones 46’), Ismael Sosa (Jorge Espericueta 46’) and Fernando Fernández (Julián Quiñones 46’)

Correcaminos: Daniel Voguel (Jesús Gallardo 46’), Néstor Olguín, Hugo Sánchez, Jonny Leveron and Pierre Ibarra (Julio Atilano 82’); Ricardo Bocanegra (Ricardo Chávez 77’), Juan Silva, José Reyes and Diego Olcina (Andrés Mendoza 71’); Ever Guzmán (Lucas Ayala 57’) and José Rosas

Referee: Alejandro Funk

YELLOW CARDS:

Tigres: Luis Rodríguez (78’)

Correcaminos: Néstor Olguín (20’), Jonny Leverón (33’), Pierre Ibarra (47’)

RED CARDS:

None

I want to write my own story at Tigres.- Lucas Zelarayán

RIVIERA MAYA | Thursday, June 30, 2016.- Lucas Zelarayán has already been with Tigres for six months. He feels that he has now adapted fully to the squad, the city and the team’s style of play, so he hopes that the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) will be his chance to kick off his career, where he can consolidate his position, prove his capacity and write his own story.

‘Chino’ talked with the Incomparable ones through a live chat on the Tigres YouTube channel, from the team’s preseason in the Riviera Maya, where he stated that he doesn’t feel that his place in the starting eleven is guaranteed after Rafael Sobis left, because there is a great deal of very fierce competition in the squad.

“I read somewhere that Rafa had left his place to me and that I am going to be his replacement. I think I would like to write my own story at Tigres and not be anyone’s replacement. Obviously, Rafa left a huge void in the team and we will, of course, miss him, but let’s hope we won’t miss him too much.

“The one who is on the best form is going to play, the competition is fierce and just as Rafa left, Ismael (Sosa) arrived, Julián Quiñones, Luis Quiñones arrived. I think the competition is good and healthy and the one who is on the best form will play and that’s what I am working to achieve, to be in the starting lineup,” he explained.

The Argentine promised to give his all at each and every opportunity that he has to be on the field. He mentioned that he is making the most of the Preseason in order to be in tiptop shape.

“I hope things work out for me. I’ll never negotiate working hard and sacrificing every minute that I’m on the pitch. You’ll see a footballer who gives his all, who will endeavor to fight for each ball as though it were the last one, and I hope that afterwards I can develop my game, contribute dynamism and verticality to the team, assists and goals. I think that’s what I have in mind to do and for this I am working one hundred percent and I hope we have a great season,” he said.

Zelarayán talked about his childhood, his first steps in football, his support for Belgrano, his idol from the past, Juan Román Riquelme, and from the present, Lionel Messi, his origins in a tough neighborhood where violence, among other things, was rife.

He also mentioned his manager, Ricardo Ferretti, showing his admiration for Tuca’s intelligence.

“‘Tuca’ is a highly intelligent manager, who’s very frank with the players. He teaches you so much and if you show respect, sacrifice and humility on the pitch, I believe that he will, at the very least, accept you. I don’t know whether he will let you play or not, but the key qualities he looks for in a player is hard work during the match, sufficient humility to listen to him and meet objectives on the field, as well as showing respect,” he commented.

Click on this link to see the full chat: https://youtu.be/BRqQ9pryG1k

Tigres is a world-class team.- Ismael Sosa

RIVIERA MAYA | Wednesday, June 29, 2016.- Tigres is a world-class team that is capable of fighting for the title in any tournament in which it participates, affirmed today Ismael Sosa, one of the felines’ new players for the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura), through a live chat held for the team’s YouTube channel.

The Argentine footballer spoke to all the followers, the Incomparable ones, who connected to the Internet, from the team’s preseason in the Riviera Maya, and praised the Tigres squad, manager and fans.

“Tigres has a world-class team that will fight to win in any tournament they want; wherever they play, the tournaments in which they compete, they will always fight. This is fundamental, they have a great team, an intelligent manager, I hope to contribute and learn, that’s what interests me most of all,” the forward explained.

Sosa also disclosed that in his native Argentina they nicknamed him ‘Chuco’ because that’s what they call people who are ‘chatterboxes’, who like to have fun and are always smiling.

“I’ve heard people say that I don’t smile and things like that, but it’s because I’m training all day long, I can’t smile all the time, but I’m gradually settling in with my new teammates. I’m a happy person and I try to have positive energy, try to contribute, always joyfully and being happy,” he said.

He also had words of praise for his current manager, Ricardo Ferretti, who he described as an intelligent, successful person and also thanked him for asking him to join Tigres.

“I’m not saying anything new, we all know what he (´Tuca’) has achieved, everything he has accomplished. Personally, I am thrilled that he asked for me and that means that I’m doing things right, and for him to ask me to form part of a great team like Tigres, with renowned players and a good team, then that makes me very happy and my obligation is to give my all in training, to endeavor to be in good shape to meet the expectations he has for me, and thank him somehow for bringing me to Tigres,” the Argentine stated.

Among other things, he wanted to clarify that he never refused to come to the felines. On the contrary, he’s delighted to form part of such a prestigious team like Tigres.

“During the Draft, a lot was said about my not wanting to come to Tigres. I never said that, I never talked to the press and I didn’t say that,” he commented, “actually I’ve found an excellent, orderly, disciplined group; I think ‘Tuca’ makes this group take their work seriously, always giving one hundred percent.”

Click on this link to see Ismael Sosa’s full chat: https://youtu.be/C2m93TFcn8w

We want win the championship.- Guido Pizarro

RIVIERA MAYA | Friday, June 24, 2016.- There is no doubt in Guido Pizarro’s mind that the beginning of a new cycle always involves redefining objectives. In the middle of the preseason, Tigres is weighing unity and group work as the key factors that will lead them to competing for the League title and, for him, a spot on the Argentinian National Team.

The UANL midfielder responded immediately when asked about his objective for the second half of 2016: “Win the championship with Tigres and be called up to the National Team”.

The same happened when the media, who are in the Riviera Maya covering the Tigres preseason, asked him to mention the team’s main strengths in regards to the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura).

“Unity, the work the group has been implementing with the technical staff for the past few years, continuing to trust in this work, with the same commitment, and that, I am quite sure, is what is going to lead us to success,” Pizarro explained.

In relation to Rafael Sobis’ departure to Brazilian football, Guido first said how sorry he is that the striker is leaving because he identified with the group and was so well-liked; however, from the sports perspective, he is sure that Tigres will not be weakened, because there are other existing and new players who are highly talented.

“He will be sorely missed, because he is an amazing person, well-liked by everyone, though from the point of view of football, it shouldn’t affect us much. We already have extremely talented players, and both Chino (Zelarayán) and Ismael who have arrived are important footballers, so let’s hope the team doesn’t miss him, though, on the human level, a great person is leaving us,” said the Argentine.

Pizarro added that the team’s style of play won’t be changing either, since Tigres has perfected its system for any player who comes out onto the pitch and he clarified that they hope to start the tournament at 100 per cent so that they won’t be struggling to qualify like last season.

“We have to work harder, go back to basics, try to carry on playing as a team, sometimes we did and sometimes we didn’t, so let’s hope that we will give our all for the team, for our teammates, and that we achieve each and every one of our goals,” the midfielder said.

I’m taking the affection of all the people and the club with me.- Rafael Sobis

RIVIERA MAYA | Thursday, June 23, 2016.- Rafael Sobis said goodbye to Tigres and his teammates during the preseason. The time has come for him to leave and continue his career in a Brazilian team. He was very open about taking the affection of the fans and the institution with him.

The Brazilian forward is emigrating to Cruzeiro in his homeland after forming part of Tigres for three seasons, during which time he achieved a League championship and three runner-up positions (League, Libertadores and the Concacaf Champions League).

“I think this was the perfect sendoff (in the preseason), because I was able to be with my teammates, say goodbye to them all, and I’m very pleased, very happy, it was good for all of us, life goes on, we have to follow our own paths, as will Tigres follow its path to triumph as it has done over the past few years.

“I’m taking affection with me, I’m taking the best, I don’t think I’ve ever adapted so well in a team (as I did in Tigres), I’ve never enjoyed so much success, I’ve never had such good statistics, so I am very grateful to the fans, to the players and to each and every person who works in the club,” he said.

After saying goodbye with a handshake and a hug for every one of the members of the feline squad, Rafa appeared before the media, who are covering the preseason in the Riviera Maya, to discuss his return to Brazil.

“I can’t say thank you enough. It was fantastic, there’s nothing negative to say. The city is perfect, the club, we achieved many things and the club will carry on succeeding, and all that’s left for me to do is to say thank you.

“Yes (mission accomplished), I sincerely never imagined so much, on a personal level and at Tigres as an institution, everything we did in the championships, it was more than I had expected and, of course, there’s always room for improvement. Losing some of the finals was hard, but we proved that we are a great team and that Tigres, from now on, will be participating in all the competitions,” were the Brazilians last words.

We want to win the Champion of Champions.- Jesús Rivas

RIVIERA MAYA | Wednesday, June, 22 2016.- Tigres is making the most of the preseason in Cancun so they will have reached their maximum fitness potential and peak playing conditions to compete in the Champion of Champions match on July 10 in Los Angeles, and add yet another trophy to their showcases, José Rivas, the felines’ defense, commented today.

The UANL team will play against Pachuca for the first trophy of the second half of 2016, and ‘Palmera’ couldn’t hide how eager he is to win it, and even highlighted that right now they are taking on the appropriate workload.

“This is the first tournament and trophy we’re playing and I want to win it.  We’re in the Final we all competed in last season to reach this Champion of Champions. I want to win and I believe we all want to win. We’ve got plenty of time to prepare properly; the workload management is setting us up to achieve an excellent playing rhythm in time for this match.

“Playing finals is always a risk. The other team counts as well. Everyone wants to win. But the fact that we are competing means that we are doing things right, and we’re enjoying ‘getting into the habit’ of reaching finals, and that’s the primordial goal of this tournament, to reach the Final and put up a good show in this tournament, not having to speculate in the last few days like we did last season, but win the points we need to qualify,” said the center back.

Pepe Rivas reiterated that the new players who have joined the team for the 2016 season, in which they will not only be competing in the Champion of Champions, but also the Mexican League (Liga MX) and the Champions League, will provide the advantage of more diversity in the offense and will also foment a fierce competition for the starting positions.

In addition, he explained that at Tigres they will be supporting Ismael Sosa and all the other new players as much as possible, so they will quickly settle in with the squad and contribute the quality each one of them has to offer.

“(Ismael contributes) dynamism along the sidelines, a lot of crosses, sometimes we weren’t up to standard in crossing, but now we have more variety, Sosa and Luis (Quiñones), a great deal of variety on the sides. The competition for the position in that aspect will be fantastic and that’s going to help us to enhance our level in this tournament,” commented Rivas.

Sosa has come to the right team and the fans will soon capture his heart.- Damián Álvarez

RIVIERA MAYA | Tuesday, June 21, 2016.- Damián Álvarez, one of Tigres’ most emblematic members, was pleased to welcome his compatriot Ismael Sosa to the institution, and sent him a powerful message: The felines’ followers will capture his heart because they are the most devoted fans in Mexican football.

Sosa reported to the team in the early hours of Saturday morning and travelled on Sunday to the start of the preseason being held on the Riviera Maya, where he met his new teammates and began his immersion in the club.

“(Sosa) has come to the right place, he has come to the place where the fans are devoted 100% to the team, they are always supporting us, they show it in each and every match, in each tournament, and just as we demand the best of ourselves on the pitch, they are always encouraging us, while an ever increasing number of followers travel to the away games.

“I think that even though Ismael and the other new lads are already aware of the dimension of this fanbase, of whom we are so very proud, we are striving to continue to prepare them more and more because we want a competitive team that is equal to the encouragement they give us,” explained Damián, honoring the Incomparable ones.

The UANL midfielder reiterated that competition in the team will be fierce this season and all the members of the squad will have to try even harder to earn a spot on the starting eleven.

‘Enano’ was obviously pleased with the arrangement he has reached with the Tigres directors to renew his contract for another year and stated that as long as he feels he is strong enough, and the directors and the technical staff believe that he can still contribute to the club, he will carry on playing football with his characteristic commitment.

“I renewed with the club for a year. We’ve always had a very honest relationship in that sense and I’m delighted to have renewed my contract, to do so with this club, to continue to grow, follow this path. They know what I think, what I have chosen for the time when my career is over, and I hope things turn out positively and naturally.

“You can’t carry on playing just to please yourself. That’s the honesty I am talking about – while I feel I am fit enough, the technical staff feels that I am still useful, the directors still have confidence in me, that I can produce results, there will always be an opportunity to extend contract,” commented the Argentinian.

Finally, Álvarez indicated that for this season, they hope to continue to build a winning team, a team that upholds its tradition of reaching finals and winning titles.

“The tradition is to always think that we have to be the winners, be the best, always think that we have to go the extra mile, continue to grow. In fact, it’s not that long ago that we lifted up a cup and let’s hope we will soon be proving that we are capable of achieving those moments again,” he said.

Hard work marks the kick-off of the preseason

CANCUN, June 20.-  The UANL Tigres kicked off the preseason today in the Riviera Maya with an intensive physical workout on the beach under the orders of their physical trainer, Guillermo Orta.
The morning training session had been scheduled to take place on the golf course, but since a delayed flight made the team arrive late at the host hotel, it was switched to the beach.
Dozens of foreign and Mexican tourists watched as the 27 players warmed up and then carried out strength, power and resistance training exercises.
Jürgen Damm was the only one who didn’t join the team on the beach since he is in the rehabilitation stage of recovery from an injury that prevented him from competing in the Copa América with the Mexican National Team. Damm worked out in the gym under the supervision of the physiotherapist, Josué de la Rosa.
The rest of the squad, including the new players such as Ismael Sosa, Luis Quiñones, Luis Rodríguez and Miguel Herrera, worked hard on the beach before breakfast.
Tigres’ manager Ricardo Ferretti will be attending the afternoon training session, which is scheduled for 17:00 horas, at the hotel’s football field.

We will make the most of the preseason to triumph in the League.- Guido Pizarro

ZUAZUA | Thursday, June 16, 2016.- The preseason in Cancun starts in a few days  and Tigres is already quite sure that if they want to reach the Playoffs and then fight for the League title, they must make the most of each and every training session on the beach and maintain regularity in all the matches  in order to fulfill their ultimate objective.

Guido Pizarro, a feline midfielder, commented that the team will have to take advantage 100% of the preseason, which takes place from June 19 through July 1 in Cancun, in order to facilitate their participation in the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura).

“In the preseason we have to generate a significant physical basis for the tournament, but I think that in the coming tournament we must be constant, consistent and give our all to the team.

“Last semester we learnt the lesson that if we don’t play as a team, it makes things very complicated or everything is the same. I hope that in the coming season we will all be in tune with each other and go back to doing what we all want,” expressed the ‘Count’ to the media at La Cueva de Zuazua, Nuevo León.

The Argentine also discussed the reinforcements who arrived at Tigres for this tournament and commented that each of them will increase the internal competition and keep the entire squad on their toes to fight hard for a starting position.

“I think it’s fine (the team), for me, if we look at the offense, there are many players who had already been reinforcements last season or the one before that and, now more people are joining us, the internal competition will be fierce, which enhances everyone’s performance, because nobody can sit back on their laurels and the one who does best is the one who will play, because since the level of quality will be higher, the coach will have the problem of deciding who is and isn’t going to play, and I’m quite sure that this will make the team grow,” he said.

He applauded the incorporation of his compatriot Ismael Sosa, who he assures is a top-ranking, highly talented midfielder who will consolidate the feline squad’s quality enormously.

Finally, he was delighted to have been considered for his country’s National Team and, even though at the last minute he didn’t travel to the Copa América, knowing that ‘Tata’ Martino has him in mind forces him to improve continuously in order to earn a place.

“We are all here to go the extra mile and, in my case, even more so knowing that there is a possibility of  being called up  to the Argentine National Team . Personally that is something I will be aiming for and undoubtedly I will have to improve even more in order to compete there,” said the midfielder.

Juninho is pleased that Tigres’ reinforcements have arrived

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Wednesday, June 15, 2016.- The team’s captain, Juninho, is delighted that Tigres’ reinforcements have arrived, because he feels that the team will be more solid than in the previous season and, with even more players, the entire squad will be driven to do their very best in every training session in order to earn a spot on the first eleven.

“Disadvantages? None (with the arrival of the new players). On the contrary, there are many advantages. The more experienced players that come here, the better. The internal competition is going to improve, become stronger and that’s so important. Now we have to get down to work, give our all in the preseason and fight for a place,” said the Brazilian.

The defense is aware that with the new talent that the feline team has managed to bring together, the squad is facing a huge responsibility and cannot expect less than striving for the championships the team will be competing for in the second half of 2016.

“We will be going all out again. I thank God that we are in this institution. The least that can be demanded in each competition in which we participate is for us to prepare extremely well in order to do better than we did last season, to endeavor to do well in the tournaments we play in, and, of course, strive to be champions,” the captain affirmed.

The media representatives approached Juninho as he was leaving the team’s offices at the Universitario Stadium to ask him about the incident in the Quarter Final match against Monterrey, where he was sent off for shoulder-to-shoulder pushing, and he answered that he still hasn’t understood the referee’s decision.

“I am certain that it was a shoulder-to-shoulder play. I didn’t understand the referee’s decision, and then they cancelled the card and said there wasn’t even a foul. But that wasn’t much consolation, because it was late. But that’s in the past now. The referee is a human being and I would like to think that he made a mistake, though his intention was good,” he said.

We have to give our all in the League.- ‘Palmera’ Rivas

MONTERREY | Wednesday, June 15, 2016.- Tigres is set to give their all in the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) and have a brilliant season, were the words of José Rivas, Tigres’ center back. .

“We want to win them all (the tournaments); the players, the directors and the technical staff want to win them all (…). We have to give our all in the League, with the new, world-class players we have, plus all those who are yet to arrive, and win that championship we long for.

“Of course we have to think like that (that we are going to give our all), be positive, though without getting overconfident or conceited, but we have to work hard and with the quality we have and being confident, I think we can succeed this season,” ‘Palmera’ explained to the media as he left the physical tests at the Universitario Hospital.

Rivas clearly explained that the arrival of the new players forces every member of the team to participate in a fierce internal, fair competition to earn a place in the first eleven, something that will make everyone try even harder in the training sessions.

“Competition is always good. Maybe no one will be sure of their place, which is what Ricardo (Ferretti) constantly says – that it’s good to have two or three players competing for each position, so it’s something we welcome.

“We are at his disposal; he’ll decide, together with the coaching staff, whether or not there will be rotation. There’s someone else who can take over your position, when you have opportunities, when you least think it they’ll be there. It can happen to all of us and the ones who make the most of it will be out on the field playing,” the defense commented.

I think we are going to have a fantastic tournament.- Damián Álvarez

MONTERREY | Tuesday, June 14, 2016.- Tigres doesn’t want to suffer again, waiting until the last day to assure their qualification to the Playoffs, which is why their first objective for the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) will be to correct the mistakes they made so their classification will be less nerve-wracking.

In the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura), the felines qualified to the Playoffs on the last day and in eighth place, something that Damián Álvarez, a Tigres forward, knows isn’t right because, given the quality of the squad, they should have achieved a better position.

“I think we’re going to have a fantastic tournament; I really hope so.  We have to start well and not leave certain situations to chance and then have to suffer. It’s not necessary. I hope we’ll be on top form so we don’t have to go through what happened last season again. We know what happened, the team managed to qualify, but obviously it wasn’t what we’d hoped for, what we knew the team was capable of. So, this tournament is our opportunity to turn this situation around,” explained the Tigres forward.

‘Enano’ (his nickname, which means Shorty) knows that for this tournament the internal competition in the squad will be very high, given the quality and quantity of the team’s new transfer players who arrived for the 2016 Apertura.  Therefore, no one can sit back and relax at all if they want to earn a place on the first team.

“We’re expecting an even greater, more intense competition. We are all aware that we have to be better than last season, including the members of the team who played often and those who didn’t see so much action. We have to keep on doing our best and fight for these positions, because there are quite a few new payers now,” said the Argentine.

Finally, Damián clarified that he is negotiating the extension of his contract as he hopes to retire from the team that has been so significant to his professional career, Tigres.

“I’m getting old! Perhaps in a year, which is accessible right now, we haven’t set any particular time period, but I definitely hope to play here until I retire,” he explained.

Tigres’ priority will be the League championship. – ‘Tuca’ Ferretti

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, June 13, 2016.- The UANL Tigres have returned to the training sessions and their manager, Ricardo Ferretti, clarified that the objective for this new season is to seek, first and foremost, the 2016 Summer (Apertura) League title and, secondly, to fight for that of the Concacaf League Championship.

‘Tuca’ came to the Universitario Stadium press room after the team’s first practice following the vacation period, where he discussed objectives, assembling the team and the arrival of the reinforcements for this new season.

“We all aim to enjoy a good preseason, work well so that as the games go by we can reap the points to reach the top spots. That’s why this institution invests so much and why I have the full support of the directors, to achieve this and not suffer like we did in last season, even though we reached the Final and lost in one tournament, and played in the Quarter Finals in another.

“We are facing two (tournaments) and I think it’s fair if we say which one is our priority; we could say both (Liga and Concacaf), which is what we attempted last season. We almost made it in one and were eliminated from the other, but even if you say both, one of them is going to have a higher percentage and I think that, undoubtedly, Mexican football is the priority,” commented the Brazilian manager.

Regarding the current situation with signing Ismael Sosa, ‘Tuca’ explained that it appears to be an administrative issue (with Pumas), which is out of his control, and commented that he hopes it is solved quickly so Sosa can join the team for the entire preseason.

“I know that it’s an administrative issue that has to be sorted out by the directors. I’m very interested in the player and he has the right for everything to be in order.

“I hope it can be resolved as soon as possible, because I would like to have all the players that I am contemplating for the football year with us during the preseason, have them here as soon as possible, so we can train, get to know each other, get to know their teammates, to understand what our goals are,” he said.

‘Tuca’ apologizes

The media asked Ferretti about the traffic incident he was involved in this weekend and the Brazilian calmly apologized to everyone who might have been hurt by the way he acted.

“I was wrong to offend the poor man just because I was so upset; it truly wasn’t right. I should like to apologize to him and also to his mother who wasn’t in any way to blame at all,” he explained, “it’s wrong because of what I represent, because I am a public figure.”

Tigres resumes training

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, June 13, 2016.- The vacation is over and training has begun for the Tigres squad before the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) at the Universitario Stadium, including four of the six transfer players who became members of the team in the last Draft.

Luis ‘Chaka’ Rodríguez, Miguel Herrera Equihua, Alberto Acosta and Julián Quiñones were the first to arrive for the team’s training sessions, while the Colombians Luis Quiñones and Francisco Meza will not be able to join them until tomorrow owing to problems with their flights, and Ismael Sosa is still resolving the status of his contract.

Apart from some of the transfer players, there were also a few players who didn’t make it to the start of the preseason since they are playing for their respective national teams, such as Nahuel Guzmán, André Pierre- Gignac, Jesús Dueñas, Javier Aquino and Jorge Torres Nilo.

Jürgen Damm arrived in order to continue with his physical therapy after being withdrawn from the Mexican national team, the Tricolor, owing to an injury, as did Guido Pizarro who wasn’t called up to the Argentina national team after all.

The team will be alternating its training sessions between San Nicolás and Zuazua until June 19, when they leave for the preseason in Cancun, where they will be staying until July 1. The technical staff is looking to the possibility of hosting a friendly match at the Universitario Stadium on the following day.

This would complete Tigres’ preparation, first of all for the Champion of Champions match to be held on July 10 in Los Angeles against Pachuca, in which the last two monarchs of the Mexican League compete against each other.

Then, the 2016 Summer Tournament (Apertura) begins the following weekend, in which Tigres will be seeking yet another championship in the Mexican League, known as Liga MX.

Tigres knows who their rivals are in the Concacaf Champions League

MIAMI | Monday, May 30, 2016.- Tigres will debut in the 2016-2017 Concacaf Champions League against ante Club Deportivo Plaza Amador, from Panama, and Club Sport Herediano, from Costa Rica. The tournament, which is a two-game, total-goals series, starts in August.

The UANL team will be participating for the second time running, but this time in their role as monarchs of the 2015 Summer Tournament (Apertura), together with another 23 teams. The draw was led by Víctor Montagliani, as the newly elected Concacaf president.

The felines reached the Final of the 2015-2016 edition against América and will now have the opportunity to fight once more to represent the Concacaf at the 2017 Club World Cup and assure that the trophy stays in Mexico.

THE RIVALS

Club Deportivo Plaza Amador

Country: Panama

Foundation: April 7, 1955

Stadium: Maracaná de Panamá

Capacity: 5,500 spectators

Location: El Chorrillo, Panama

Nicknames:  Los Leones del Cocoliso Tejada, El Equipo del Pueblo or El Plaza

League Titles: 6

Best Champions League Participation: First participation

Club Sport Herediano

Country: Costa Rica

Foundation: June 12, 1921

Stadium: Eladio Rosabal Cordero

Capacity: 8,700 spectators

Location: Heredia, Costa Rica

Nicknames:  Team Florense

League Titles: 25

Best Champions League Participation: 2014-2015 Semifinals

The Universitario Stadium is celebrating its 49th anniversary

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, May 30, 2016.- 49 years ago today the ball began to roll in Tigres’ home, a temple that has demonstrated its magic time and time again since May 30, 1967, the date on which the Universitario Stadium was inaugurated and that since then has vibrated with the euphoria of the fans known as the Incomparables.

The dream of building the Universitario Stadium emerged in the mid-sixties when the UANL decided to construct a building that would house the institution’s representative teams, and even though the original projected capacity was for 90 thousand fans, in the end it was 55 thousand with an investment of 23 million pesos.

Although the inauguration date is marked as May 30, it is well worth remembering that almost a year beforehand, on May 22, 1966, when the stadium was still at the shell-and-core stage, it hosted a Final between the UANL representative team and the Albinegros from the city’s Independencia Subdivision, in the context of the Northeastern Interstate First Team League.

Tigres’ first match at the Universitario took place on July 13,1967, against Orizaba, in the felines’ debut in the Second Division. The final score was a 2-2 draw and José de Jesús ‘Triquis’ Morales became the first player from the local team to score a goal at the stadium.

From then on, a long history has been built for the Universitario, which has witnessed two Cup championships, four League titles, always playing the first match at the Uni, as the stadium is known, many American Football finals, a World Cup match in 1986 and a U-17 World Championship, as well as innumerable concerts.

THE UNI’S STATISTICS

Inauguration date: May 30, 1967

Cost: 23 million pesos

Inaugural capacity: 55 thousand fans

Current capacity: 42 thousand fans

Tigres’ first match: July 13, 1967 (Tigres 2-2 Orizaba)

League Finales: 8

League Titles: 4

Libertadores Final: 1

Cup Titles: 2

Javier Aquino, proof that dreams do come true

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Tuesday, May 24, 2016.- Back in 1990, in San Francisco Ixhuatán, Oaxaca, with a population of just 4,000, Javier Ignacio Aquino Carmona was born. There, Aquino took his first steps, always surrounded by football. In that village, the custom was for children to inherit their parents’ trades and lives, but Javier had something very different in mind.

Aquino wanted to conquer the world, he didn’t view things in the same way as his friends, he dreamt of leaving the village one day to become the first professional footballer from that place. However, his friends tried to put a stop to his dreams, reminding him that nobody left San Francisco Ixhuatán, but he was inspired by all the praise he received when playing with a ball on a football field.

“When I was in my village, everyone one said how well I played and that I had the right qualities, though obviously people didn’t believe, because back there in the village I have seen highly talented people but they always want to stay there, work there, raise a family there, fulfill a cycle there, and I had to break away from this pattern that I could see and get away, … leave my family,” the player from Oaxaca explained.

He thanks a higher being for his talents as a footballer, but also acknowledges his father, who always did everything possible to instill in him a love for this sport, forming as many teams of children as he could so that he and his brother could play with the ball and prepare for their future.

Javier never forgets his roots; they are with him in every answer he gives. He is grateful to his parents for their support, but he also fondly remembers his friends, the people who surrounded him and the environment that made him become what he is today.

“Going back to my village is a fantastic experience; people make me feel so welcome. I’m the only player from there and who has reached the First Division. They truly give me the warmest of welcomes, especially the children. I love being an example for them, being someone who they can admire, because when I was little and lived there, I looked up to people and wanted to be like my idols. Now I have the opportunity to be someone for that village and going there and remembering my childhood makes me so happy,” expressed the now feline player.

Aquino was born in a year of social change that marked the history of the world. In 1990, the South African leader, Mandela, was freed after 27 years of incarceration; the Chilean military regime of Augusto Pinochet came to an end; Iraq invaded Kuwait triggering the Gulf War; and East and West Germany were reunified, among many other events.

“I’m surprised to learn that. I was lucky to be born in that year. We can’t choose, but God put me there and maybe that’s why I have such a strong personality and when I come up against something unexpected, I am able to cope,” he proudly said, with a smile on his face.

He debuted in the First Division on July 23, 2010, playing for Cruz Azul, and the Oaxacan fully recalls that day as one of the happiest in his life, since it was when he realized that dreams can come true and that leaving his village had been worth it. He showed everyone that you can aspire to being a First Division player.

Today, six years on from that moment, after playing for Cruz Azul, Villarreal and Rayo Vallecano, he considers that at Tigres he has become much more mature and feels that he is a more all-round player with the necessary experience to provide a diversity of performances.

“It’s different because when I was at Cruz Azul, I had just turned 20 and now my five years of experience are reflected on the pitch. You are no longer in such a hurry, when you are young you want to eat up the pitch and now you have to be intelligent, stop and look for the teammates who are in the best position,” Aquino commented regarding his evolution.

Finally, he recognized that he always believed the right-hand side was the best position for him in his career, because that is where he started and developed, but, currently, the Tigres manager, Ricardo Ferretti, decided to place him on the left and his performance has been very high. Now he’s not sure which is his favorite side.

“When I played on the right, I always thought that that was the best position for me. I liked playing on the right, crossing the ball, and I always identified with that position.  And now I’m here, ‘Tuca’ changed me to the left-hand side and I’ve come to like it, so I’m not sure which side I prefer,” he recalled.

Aquino’s Stats

GPMPCPIPPSDCTDCPGBRFC
171,41064719576.8%181.9 k . m.11.6 k. m.25420

Nomenclature: GP.- Games Played; MP.- Minutes Played; CP.- Complete Passes; IP.- Incorrect Passes; PS.- Pass Success; DCT.- Distance Covered in the Tournament; DCPG.- Distance Covered Per Game in the Tournament; BR.- Balls Regained and FC.- Fouls Committed

Guido Pizarro, the tireless Tigres player

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, May 23, 2016.- He’s a man who doesn’t hold back, who match after match runs to and fro across the whole pitch to snatch the ball from the opponents as well as to assure that his team moves forward from the midfield, his name is: Guido Pizarro, who, throughout the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura) dominated several areas of the Liga MX (Mexican League) statistics.

‘El Conde’ (the Count) played a total of 1,603 minutes in16 League matches and both of the Quarter Finals, but his work is even more outstanding regarding touching the ball, in which he ranked third in the tournament in complete passes and second in passes received, and was also the fifth man, out of all 18 teams, for covering the greatest distance.

The Argentine’s pass success was 88.2%, the fourth best of all the Liga MX players. It is worth noting that Guido covered a remarkable192.5 kilometers across the 17 fixtures of the 2016 Winter Tournament, with an average of 12.2 kilometers per game.

Guido’s Stats

GPMPCPIPPSDCTDCPGBRFC
161,4231,11614988.2%192.5 km.12.2 km.33945

Nomenclature: GP.- Games Played; MP.- Minutes Played; CP.- Complete Passes; IP.- Incorrect Passes; PS.- Pass Success; DCT.- Distance Covered in the Tournament; DCPG.- Distance Covered Per Game in the Tournament; BR.- Balls Regained and FC.- Fouls Committed

This country captured my heart.- André-Pierre Gignac

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Tuesday, May 17, 2016.- André-Pierre Gignac is delighted to have made the decision to come to Mexico to play football with the UANL Tigres, because our country’s culture and way of life captured his heart immediately, assured the French striker in an interview at the Latin American French Institute (IFAL).

Before the match against Cruz Azul, at the IFAL Mexico City office, Gignac talked about his time in the country and revealed that he always has good things to say when they ask him in his native country about having signed with the felines.

“When I am lucky enough to go back to the national team, they ask me many questions about Mexico, not just about football, but also the country and the people. I always have good things to say, because I think and can affirm that this country has captured my heart,” stated the leading goal scorer in Mexican football.

He also spoke a few words in Spanish and mentioned that he hopes to become another Mexican in a year’s time, given the enormous affection he feels for the country, and he reiterated that he hopes to stay here for longer.

“It gives me great pride to be like a new Mexican, because my son was born here in Monterrey and, hopefully, I will obtain Mexican nationality in a year’s time. It would make me so proud, because I feel at home here, I feel good and so does my family. My little girl is four years old and speaks Spanish. She started school about six months ago and already speaks Spanish very well. This has made my whole family so happy and contented. I hope I can stay in Monterrey and in Mexico for many more years to come,” he said.

Click on this link to view the full interview posted by IFAL: https://youtu.be/6Ix8z3YOyhE

Tigres is already working on presenting a better team

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Tuesday, May 17, 2016.- Tigres is upset about not reaching the goal they had set at the beginning of the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura).  The objective was to be two-time champions and, in this way, give their fans something else to celebrate. However, the team cannot be unhappy forever, so the President of the Institution, Alejandro Rodríguez Miechielsen, confirmed that they are already working toward forming an even better squad for the next tournament.

“I am very proud of the players, the coaches and everyone who represents Tigres in this tournament. I believe that everybody did their very best. Those of us who are on the inside know the difficulties of each specific, special situation that was the cause of our inability to defend our championship and become two-time champions.

“We didn’t fulfill our goal, we didn’t reach our objective, our aim was to be two-time champions and that’s why the players were in the locker room venting their anger and disappointment at not achieving the two-time championship. This is something that is imperative for the Tigres team, to always reach for the stars and to keep growing constantly. Tigres is a staircase which we are climbing step by step and you expect a better team than the one we have just seen,” said the director.

Rodríguez Miechielsen commented that the team’s next actions will be to work toward the transfer process to be held on June 8, and define the pre-season plans once the lists of all the teams that are considering feline players have been defined, for whom a customized plan will be developed so they can arrive with the same rhythm.

The director completely ruled out the pre-season in South America, which had at first been offered, since some interest was shown in going to Colombia or Argentina, and explained that the dates didn’t fit in with the team’s work plans.

However, he was grateful that the eyes of the world had turned toward Tigres as a result of their participation in diverse tournaments and engagement of players with an international reputation, which places them on a completely different level.

He also wanted to show his appreciation for the support of the felines’ fans throughout the League tournament and accepted that the ‘Incomparables’ (the Incomparable Ones) deserved a better prize.

“Our acknowledgement, appreciation and a huge round of applause for each and every Tigres fan, for those who understand, those who sort of understand and those who don’t understand, but in the end they all hold the team close to their hearts and that’s what makes possible, gives life to and is the raison d’être of our work and all our efforts. It’s not just words, but something we truly and deeply feel and they deserve more than we gave them this time and we are going all out for a new tournament, for new achievements,”  he declared.

Nahuel Guzmán, the Iron Tiger

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, May 16, 2016.- Across 17 days and two Playoff matches, there was one man who played all the available minutes in the tournament: the goalkeeper  Nahuel Guzmán was that ‘Iron Tiger’ who was there for the Tigres’ total of 1,710 minutes in the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura).

‘Patón’, as he is known, was irreplaceable in the regular tournament and the Quarter Finals. He played 19 matches for Tigres and conceded 23 goals, 19 during the 17 ‘Clausura’ fixtures, to become the goalkeeper who conceded the third least goals.

Of the 23 goals he conceded up to the Quarter Finals, 16 were from inside the penalty area and 7 from outside. In fact, throughout the tournament just one penalty was awarded against Tigres and two in the direct elimination series with Rayados, both of which he saved.

‘Patón’s’ Stats

ITEMNUMBER
Games played, League17
Games played, Playoffs2
Minutes played, League1,530
Minutes played, Playoffs180
Goals conceded, League 19
Goals conceded, Playoffs4
Goal conceded every74 minutes
Yellow cards4
Matches with a clean sheet5
Saves44

Tigres need to improve their decisiveness.- Guido Pizarro

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Thursday, May 12, 2016.- Tigres are very upset because they played the way they needed to against Rayados, they generated numerous opportunities, but were unable to convert them into goals, affirmed Guido Pizarro, a midfielder for the felines, today.

“El Conde” clarified that they will be able to avoid elimination if they play in the same way and with the same strength of character they showed on Wednesday, though they must improve their decisiveness.

“I think that in these phases, where everyone is at the same level, it’s unusual to highlight the good side of a result like this, especially in a Derby, but yesterday we were the dominant team, though they defended themselves well, and even though we generated situations, I think that this hadn’t happened to us in other matches, it’s a shame that we couldn’t finish them.

“Right now, in these phases, it’s important to finish, to win, and nothing else matters. There’s no doubt that we will have to play a good game and take advantage of all the opportunities in order to make sure we have a chance,” said the Argentine.

Pizarro explained that the key to the second leg of the Quarter Final against Monterrey will be to score as quickly as possible to give them the confidence to face the rest of the match, which he hopes will be played with the same approach as the 107th Derby.

“When going for the first goal, the key will be to try to keep calm and score first at the very start of the match, being careful about the spaces we leave so they can’t gain confidence and score against us, that’s where the key to the game will be. This match will be similar, with the opponent trying to succeed in their attack like they did yesterday, but we have to be more decisive, otherwise it’s going to be difficult,” he said.

The midfielder, who is a naturalized Mexican citizen, is certain that things can improve and that they will be able to achieve the right result in the second leg, and right now they are mentally prepared to win the match.

“(Right now we feel) angry more than anything, because yesterday we played a great game and left with a bad result, but we must carry on, we have another 90 minutes and we have to keep fighting right to the very end.

“There’s no time to beat ourselves up, we have to keep on doing our best and try to turn the score around on Saturday,” Guido commented.

Tigres is coming to the 107th Derby ready to deliver the first surprise in the Playoffs

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Tuesday, May 10, 2016.- Once more Tigres and Rayados will be facing each other in the Playoffs; the protagonists of the Monterrey Derby will be competing for a place in the Semifinal of the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura) in the 107th edition of this event.  In this way, the felines are setting out on the path to becoming Two-time Champions, a feat achieved by only two teams in the short tournaments.

Tigres is the current Champion of Mexican football and earned a spot in the Playoffs on the very last day, in eighth place, but filled with hope and enthusiasm to continue to make history.

Only Pumas and León have managed to become Two-time Champions in Mexican football’s short tournaments, which isn’t an easy accomplishment, especially when a team is participating in two or more competitions. Just a few days ago, the felines were playing for the Concacaf Champions League title and five months ago for the Mexican League title.

The team led by Ricardo Ferretti will be competing in the 107th Derby against Rayados, playing the first leg at home, at a jam-packed Universitario Stadium this Wednesday, and in what will also be the first match of the Quarter Finals.

The balance of the Monterrey Derbies still favors Tigres by one match. Of the 106 derbies played so far, the felines have won 37 compared to their regional rival’s 36, together with 32 draws. And they hope to increase this record in this two-game series.

In the 106th edition, which took place on March 5 this year, Tigres lost 1-0 at the BBVA Bancomer Stadium in a match in which the visitors deserved much more, but this was not reflected in the outcome.  However, up until that game, the felines had enjoyed six consecutive matches without losing, with three victories and three draws.

On Wednesday, the Frenchman André-Pierre Gignac will also be playing as the new top-scorer title holder with 13 goals, and will do so at home where he scored a goal against Rayados in the 105th Derby, when they won 3-1.

In order to advance to the Semifinals, Tigres has to surpass the Guadalupe team’s aggregate score. If the matches are a draw, they need to have scored more goals as the visiting team, otherwise they will face the third tiebreaking criterion, which is the position on the general table, and in that case the rival would be in a better situation.

Today is the day on which history will be written. Tigres will be moving steadfastly toward a special place in the history of Mexican football, to becoming Two-time Champions and seeking their sixth final in just two and a half years.

MONTEREY DERBY STATISTICS

TEAMGPGWGDGLGFGADIFF.
Tigres106373236145139+ 6
Monterrey106363237139145– 6

* The 28th Derby was suspended at minute 7 owing to a fight on the pitch

ALL THE DERBIES

EDITIONSCORESTADIUMTYPEDATE
1Tigres 3-3 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague13 July 1974
2Monterrey 2-1 TigresUniversitarioLeague4 January 1975
3Tigres 0-4 MonterreyUniversitarioFriendly23 August 1975
4Monterrey 0-0 TigresUniversitarioLeague31 January 1976
5Tigres 0-1 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague12 June 1976
6Tigres 1-2 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague25 September 1976
7Monterrey 3-2 TigresUniversitarioLeague5 February 1977
8Tigres 1-0 MonterreyTecnológicoLeague13 August 1977
9Monterrey 2-4 TigresUniversitarioLeague14 January 1978
10Monterrey 0-0 TigresUniversitarioLeague23 September 1978
11Tigres 1-1 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague3 February 1979
12Monterrey 0-1 TigresUniversitarioPlayoffs6 June 1979
13Tigres 1-1 MonterreyUniversitarioPlayoffs16 June 1979
14Monterrey 1-1 TigresUniversitarioLeague6 October 1979
15Tigres 2-1 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague16 February 1980
16Monterrey 2-2 TigresTecnológicoLeague4 October 1980
17Tigres 3-2 MonterreyUniversitarioFriendly6 November 1980
18Tigres 2-0 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague21 March 1981
19Tigres 3-0 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague3 October 1981
20Monterrey 1-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague6 February 1982
21Monterrey 1-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague18 September 1982
22Tigres 2-0 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague22 January 1983
23Tigres 0-2 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague17 September 1983
24Monterrey 0-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague28 January 1984
25Tigres 1-2 MonterreyUniversitarioFriendly11 August 1984
26Tigres 2-2 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague17 November 1984
27Monterrey 2-0 TigresTecnológicoLeague30 March 1985
28Tigres – Monterrey*UniversitarioFriendly1 May 1985
29Tigres 1-2 MonterreyUniversitarioFriendly28 September 1985
30Tigres 1-1 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague25 October 1986
31Monterrey 0-2 TigresTecnológicoLeague21 March 1987
32Tigres 2-1 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague12 December 1987
33Monterrey 2-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague7 May 1988
34Tigres 1-3 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague14 January 1989
35Monterrey 1-0 TigresTecnológicoLeague13 May 1989
36Tigres 0-2 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague2 December 1989
37Monterrey 0-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague31 March 1990
38Monterrey 4-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague22 December 1990
39Tigres 2-1 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague27 April 1991
40Monterrey 0-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague7 December 1991
41Tigres 1-1 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague4 April 1992
42Tigres 1-1 MonterreyUniversitarioFriendly1 August 1992
43Tigres 1-2 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague7 November 1992
44Monterrey 1-0 TigresTecnológicoLeague20 March 1993
45Monterrey 3-3 TigresTecnológicoFriendly7 August 1993
46Monterrey 1-0 TigresTecnológicoLeague6 November 1993
47Tigres 2-4 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague5 March 1994
48Monterrey 1-0 TigresTecnológicoLeague30 November 1994
49Tigres 1-2 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague5 April 1995
50Monterrey 2-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague2 December 1995
51Tigres 1-2 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague24 March 1996
52Tigres 2-2 MonterreyUniversitarioCopa27 July 1996
53Tigres 0-4 MonterreyUniversitarioFriendly19 July 1997
54Monterrey 2-3 TigresTecnológicoLeague13 September 1997
55Tigres 1-0 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague27 February 1998
56Monterrey 1-1 TigresTecnológicoLeague12 September 1998
57Tigres 3-2 MonterreyUniversitarioFriendly19 December 1998
58Tigres 2-0 MonterreyUniversitarioLeague

Nahuel hopes that the Derby will be a good show

ESCOBEDO | Tuesday, May 10, 2016.- For the 107th Derby, the players hope to respond with a good show on the pitch and Nahuel Guzmán, Tigres’ goalkeeper, is confident that given the players in both teams, he foresees a highly engaging match and took this opportunity to ask the fans to enjoy the game without resorting to violence.

“A Derby is the match we are all waiting for, that we all want to play, that the people play, the journalists also play their game and we have to give a good show on the pitch. So, let’s hope it will be a fantastic match because of all that’s implied by the context as well. I think that because of the way we finished the regular phase of the tournament and the position they are in, it will be a very engaging match,” said the goalkeeper.

The Argentine even went so far as to say that owing to the way both teams ended the tournament, Tigres has a slight advantage to win the Derby. He also recalled that the General Table positions don’t make much difference because a completely different kind of tournament is played in the Playoffs.

“Obviously, because of their position in the table the top team is the favorite, but we were the top team and lost to the eighth place last year, when Santos disqualified us. I have always said that the Playoffs are hand to hand and especially since this is a Derby.

“And regarding results, just like the table positions, the last results are also a parameter. Rayados hasn’t won their last two matches and we haven’t lost in the last two games, so, somehow, I think that in relation to football we are ahead,” stated Nahuel.

‘Patón’ is aware that both the UANL team and the blue and whites have a lot to lose if they are eliminated and mentioned, as an example, what’s at play for Tigres, which is the possibility of defending their League title, as well as the huge emotional strength gained when winning a match like this.

“The ideal is always to experience, to enjoy these games. Everyone wants to win, we all like to win, I think this city is very passionate and that it’s wonderful that these matches can be played in peace, without violence, without aggression, beyond the usual provocation that goes on before and after each match, but I truly hope this Derby will be free from aggression and violence,” Nahuel affirmed.

Gignac is Tigres’ third champion goal scorer

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, May 9, 2016.- André-Pierre Gignac  is the champion goal scorer of the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura) with 13 goals, earning a place, in his second tournament with the team, in Tigres’ history and sharing this honor with Andrés ‘Cuqui’ Silvera and ‘Divino’ Walter Gaitán.

Only the Argentine duo, Silvera and Gaitán, had been able to achieve this honor of being Mexican football’s top scorers. However, they both shared their title with other players:  ‘Cuqui’ with Bruno Marioni, from Pumas, and ‘Divino’ with Kléber Boas, Matías Vuoso and Sebastián Abreu.

Gignac was able to secure the title of top scorer with 13 goals, surpassing his closest rivals by four and even bettering the 11 goals he had scored in the previous tournament.

Since his arrival at Tigres, the French player already has a total of 32 goals in 45 matches played, with an average of .7 goals per game, although the Playoffs are still to come.

TIGRES CHAMPION GOAL SCORERS

2004 WINTER TOURNAMENT (KNOWN AS CLAUSURA)

PLAYERTEAMCOUNTRY
Andrés SilveraTigresArgentina
Bruno MarioniPumasArgentina

16 Goals

2005 SUMMER TOURNAMENT (KNOWN AS APERTURA)

PLAYERTEAMCOUNTRY
Walter GaitánTigresArgentina
Matías VuosoSantosArgentina
Kléber BoasAméricaBrazil
Sebastián AbreuDoradosUruguay

11 Goals

2016 WINTER TOURNAMENT (KNOWN AS CLAUSURA)

PLAYERTEAMCOUNTRY
André-Pierre GignacTigresFrance

13 Goals

ALL OF GIGNAC’S GOALS AND HIS ‘VICTIMS’

TOURNAMENTDAYOPPONENTMINUTE
APERTURA 20153CHIVAS (H)44’
APERTURA 20155CHIAPAS (H)28’, 36’ and 69’
APERTURA 20157QUERÉTARO (H)26’
APERTURA 20158AMÉRICA (A)27’
APERTURA 20159MONTERREY (H)62’
APERTURA 201513PACHUCA (H)9’ and 48’
APERTURA 201515SANTOS (H)6’
APERTURA 201516VERACRUZ (A)12’
APERTURA 2015QUARTER FINALCHIAPAS (H)21’
APERTURA 2015QUARTER FINALCHIAPAS (A)21’
APERTURA 2015FINALPUMAS (H)14’
APERTURA 2015FINALPUMAS (A)103’
CLAUSURA 20162MORELIA (H)74’
CLAUSURA 20164LEÓN (H)11’, 28’ and 45’
CLAUSURA 20165CHIAPAS (A)56’
CLAUSURA 20166TIJUANA (H)70’
CLAUSURA 20167QUERÉTARO (A)11’
CLAUSURA 20168AMÉRICA (H)83’
CLAUSURA 201612ATLAS (H)16’
CLAUSURA 201614DORADOS (H)8’ and 47’
CLAUSURA 201617CRUZ AZUL (A)23’ and 74’
COPA LIBERTADORESSEMIFINALINTERNATIONAL (H)17’
CONCACAFQUARTER FINALREAL SALT LAKE (A)89’
CONCACAFSEMIFINALQUERÉTARO (H)83’ and 86’

NOTE.- (H) Home matches; (A) Away matches

ALL OF HIS GOALS AND ALL OF HIS MATCHES

TOURNAMENTGAMES PLAYEDPHASEGOALS
APERTURA 201515REGULAR11
APERTURA 20156PLAYOFFS4
CLAUSURA 201613REGULAR11
COPA LIBERTADORES4SEMIFINAL AND FINAL1
CONCACAF4QUARTER FINAL AND SEMIFINAL3

TOTAL

TOURNAMENTGAMES PLAYEDPHASEGOALS
AP 2015 / CL 201631LEAGUE24
AP 2015 / CL 20166PLAYOFFS4
CONCACAF AND LIBERTADORES8INTERNATIONAL4
TOTAL4532

AVERAGE OF 0.7 GOALS PER MATCH

Our aim as a team is to be crowned champions.- Javier Aquino

SAN NICOLÁS DE LOS GARZA | Monday, May 9, 2016.- Tigres are looking far beyond the Quarter Finals. The team’s goal, right from the beginning of the tournament, has been to secure the Mexican League title once more.

“(We are) pleased to have fulfilled our objective of participating in the Playoffs, which is what we had proposed but had taken a long time to achieve, more than we expected. Secondly, the season won’t have been saved just by winning this Derby and qualifying to the next round; our goal is to be crowned champions, retain the title and prove that we have a great team. I do think that it’s an important match, of course, but we mustn’t attach too much importance to it, it’s a Derby.

“Statistics are made to be broken and very often when the odds are against you, victory is even sweeter. The team is going to try to do this and is highly aware and very confident that it can,” Javier Aquino stated, after the team’s training session at the Universitario Stadium

Aquino explained that in the Playoffs, it doesn’t matter whether a team classified in first or eighth place, because, as of that moment, the team that displays the greatest strength and composure on the pitch will be the one that moves on to the Semifinal.

“Personally, I don’t feel under pressure, I feel good about facing the team. I’m not concerned any more about table positions, that we were in eighth place, that we were last. I see a team that is in the Quarter Finals, that is going to fight like the other seven to be champions, not the position. We can’t go out onto the pitch thinking we were eighth and they were first, such a negative attitude wouldn’t be to our advantage. We will be playing as equals, as two great teams with two great squads who are going to do their best to win this phase,” said the Tigres player.

Javier stressed that the Tigres squad has a great deal of experience in playing in the final stages, has already been Champions of Mexican football, and is eager to continue to give its all game after game and prove its quality, regardless of who the opponent is.

He also took this opportunity to recognize the work of André-Pierre Gignac as the champion goal scorer and asserted that having a player like him is very reassuring for the team.

“André has definitely won the title and I would like to congratulate him. It’s highly satisfactory for us to have a player of this stature, of this level, that you know will be very reassuring for the team. He is also a colleague and knows that part of teamwork is doing what he does best, which is scoring goals, and that’s what he’s been doing. It’s a pleasure for us to have him here and in the League,” Aquino commented.

Tigres is the eighth guest to the Playoffs

MEXICO, May 7.-The UANL Tigres were decisive. They waited patiently for their opponent and became the Playoff’s eighth team by beating the Cruz Azul ‘Machine’ 3-0.
André-Pierre Gignac scored two goals, practically making him the champion individual goal scorer with a total of 13, since his closest rival has just nine.
The match started somewhat hesitantly, slowly, with the local team seeking to be more orderly than Tigres, who started with patience and excellent ball control.
In Jürgen Damm’s absence, this time the manager Ricardo Ferretti turned to Damián Álvarez, who usually has a strong impact as a substitute, to provide options on the left-hand side.
Javier Aquino, who was revisiting the home that launched him in the First Division, played a fantastic game on the right.
André-Pierre Gignac began to play in harmony with Rafael Sobis, something they made quite clear at minute 14, when the French player passed the ball to the Brazilian, who managed to make a space and then crossed the ball into the net just inside the right-hand post, bringing the score to 1-0.
The goal ignited the approximately 2 thousand ‘incomparable’ fans who had travelled to the Azul Stadium, making their dream of reaching the Playoffs more of a reality.
Tigres,  far from playing defensively and holding back, maintained their keynote strategy of possessing the ball and seeking recovery from the midfield, where Guido Pizarro once more proved to be a solid stronghold against the light-blues’ attacks.
Later, at minute 24, Gignac escaped to score an incredible goal. It was now 2-0 for our team and 12 for the Frenchman in the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura).
Three minutes later, Israel Jiménez fouled Ariel Rojas, who was awarded a penalty. Christián Jiménez took the penalty kick and smashed the ball into the post, while his attempt from the rebound was stopped by Nahuel, although the referee had in fact already signaled that the Cruz Azul player was offside.
It was Tigres’ moment, and Gignac wanted to make the most of it. At the 32-minute mark his opportunity for the third goal was blocked several times by the goalie.
The Machine, as Cruz Azul is known, tried to react with long passes down the sides, but Hugo Ayala played brilliantly and twice broke up dangerous options at Nahuel’s goal.
In the second half, Tuca made his first change of the match, replacing Dueñas with Manuel Viniegra, seeking to refresh the recovery in the midfield and defensive zones.
On the other hand, the local team brought on Joffre Guerrón, a well-known and experienced player, to replace Jiménez, while Santos substituted Maza Rodríguez. The managers were beginning to play from the sidelines.
Cruz Azul started to gain greater ball possession, with Santos looking extremely dangerous on the left, where Tigres had to work harder.
The light-blues’ insistence was becoming unrelenting against Tigres who were waiting for the opponent, until 61’ when Joao Rojas was sent off for hitting Nahuel Guzmán when he did not have the ball.
Even though they were one man down, Cruz Azul didn’t give up and kept trying to find opportunities in Tigres’ area.
At 63’, Damián tried to break away from the left, but was unable to complete the pass. Then, at the 65th minute, Gignac had yet another opportunity, but his shot went wide of the left post.
However at minute 75, Lucas Zelarayan, who had replaced Aquino, crossed the ball to Gignac, who scored from inside the box bringing the result to 3-0 and setting our team firmly on the path to the Playoffs and the title.
At 82’, Fabio Santos had the ball on the edges of the area, but his shot flew over Nahuel’s goal and, at this point, the Cruz Azul fans started to make their way out of the stadium.
The Machine kept trying, while Tigres sought to maintain possession of the ball and safeguard the score during the last minutes of the match.
At the end, the team and the fans celebrated this victory together, while being fully aware that the most important phase of the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura) is about to start.

LINEUPS
CRUZ AZUL: José Corona; Francisco Rodríguez (Fabio Santos 46’), Julio Domínguez, Víctor Vázquez (Vicente Vuoso 63’), Christian Jiménez (Joffre Guerrón 46’), Joao Rojas, Aldo Ramírez, Ariel Rojas, Rafael Baca, Jorge Benítez and Omar Mendoza.
TIGRES: Nahuel Guzmán; Israel Jiménez (José Fco. Torres 81’), Juninho, Hugo Ayala, Jorge Torres Nilo; Jesús Dueñas (Manuel Viniegra 46’), Guido Pizarro, Javier Aquino (Lucas Zelarayan 74’), Damián Álvarez, Rafael Sobis and André-Pierre Gignac.

Tigres will be seeking a victory in order to qualify to the Playoffs

MEXICO CITY | Friday, May 6, 2016.- This Saturday is Tigres’ last chance to qualify to the Playoffs. Victory is the only result that will enable the UANL team to defend their championship crown in the final phase of the tournament. Cruz Azul is the rival and will also be playing for a spot in the top eight.

The team directed by Ricardo Ferretti is currently in ninth place in the 2016 Winter Tournament (Clausura), with 21 points, while the light-blues are one place higher and have one point more than the felines, so a win would mean a direct ticket to the Playoffs for Tigres.

A draw or a loss will mean the end of the tournament for Tigres, but a win would give them the opportunity to fight for the two-time championship, something achieved so far in short tournaments only by Pumas and León.

Although historically the match statistics against Cruz Azul are not very favorable for the felines, the more recent history for these games is. In the last 10 matches, Tigres has lost just one game, won six and drawn three, showing that the San Nicolás de los Garza team is the stronger of the two.

The last fixture between these two teams took place on Day 17 of the 2015 Summer Tournament (Apertura), which ended in a goalless draw, sending the future champions of that tournament down from third to fifth place.

An interesting fact is that in the last five games played at the Estadio Azul in Mexico City, Tigres has won two, lost two and drawn one, giving the felines a slight advantage in the matches at this venue.

If they win this Saturday and classify to the Playoffs, ‘Tuca’s’ men would be in eighth place, which means they would be facing the top team.

Tigres is on the threshold of attaining their fourth classification in a row to the Mexican League Playoffs, known as the ‘Fiesta Grande’, something they have not achieved in the short tournaments. They are also hoping that André-Pierre Gignac will hold onto his first place on the individual goal scorer table, where he has 11 goals, two more than his closest rivals.

MATCH RECORD AGAINST CRUZ AZUL

TEAMGPGWGDGLGFGADIFF.
TIGRES89272735100128-28
CRUZ AZUL89352727128100+28

MATCH RECORD AGAINST CRUZ AZUL IN MEXICO CITY

TEAMGPGWGDGLGFGADIFF.
CRUZ AZUL44231298442+42
TIGRES44912234284-42