Apertura 2016 Playoffs: Tijuana 3, Leon 2

Tijuana’s home stadium is named Estadio Caliente, but the hosts were seriously En Fuego tonight in their second leg game against Leon, needing a major shutout effort to overcome a huge 1st leg deficit to be able to continue their #1 ranked tournament run. And they got it for almost 80 minutes…or 10 minutes too short in a not-enough 3-2 win. The real en fuego started just 7 minutes in after a Tijuana warning, which led to not 1, not 2, but THREE Rojas! After the first of numerous Amarillas of the game was given to Guido Rodriguez, Tijuana coach Miguel Herrera apparently used some choice espanol on the linesman nearby as well as the referee-Rojas! HE GONE! And right after that was assistant coach Diego Ramirez-Rojas! HE GONE! So now Tijuana was down both their coach AND their assistant coach! But they weren’t done yet-Vitor Gomez spiked a Leon attacker in the leg going for a slide tackle when he had the ball-ouch! Rojas! HE GONE! So they managed a Roja hat trick and to be a man and 2 coaches down in just 16 minutes! Oh, and Dayro Moreno scored in the 12th minute on a penalty kick. Right before halftime Yasser Corona & Rodriguez scored goals to give Tijuana a 3-0 lead and put them right back in it. Things looked to be going the Xolos’ way until Moreno was subbed out in the 77th minute with a comfortable lead…except Leon had not subbed out Mauro Boselli. Just 3 minutes after the substitution he headed the ultimately series-winning goal for Leon, and Luis Montes added an insurance goal just a couple minutes later. So despite losing today 3-2, their 3-0 home win in the first leg was enough to give Leon a 5-3 aggregate victory and upset win. They’ll now wait for tomorrow’s games to find out whether they will play Pachuca or Tigres in the semifinals. As for Tijuana, despite their elimination I would expect them to file an appeal with the Disciplinary Committee to try and get Herrera & Ramirez out of their automatic suspensions which, if upheld, would keep them out of at least the opening game of the Clausura 2017 Tournament. Gomez also will be out at least 1 game pending appeal. We’ll know for sure come Monday or Tuesday.

Game Stats:
Goals-Dayro Moreno (Tijuana, 10′, Penalty Kick, 1st of playoffs), Yasser Corona (Tijuana, 40′, 1st of playoffs, Guido Rodriguez (Tijuana, 42′, 1st of playoffs), Mauro Boselli (Leon, 80′, 2nd of playoffs), Luis Montes (Leon, 83′, 1st of playoffs)
Shots on Goal-Leon 6, Tijuana 2
Corner kicks-Leon 5, Tijuana 2
Amarillas-Tijuana 2 (Guido Rodriguez, 7′, Aviles Hurtado, 45′), Leon 2 (William Yarbrough, 11′, Guillermo Burdisso, 14′)
Rojas-Tijuana 3 (Miguel Herrera, 7′, Diego Ramirez, 8′, Vitor Gomez, 16′)

Venue: Estadio Caliente, Tijuana, Baja California
Attendance: 26,733 (105% capacity)-SELLOUT

Next up:
Leon-Semifinals Wednesday or Thursday vs. Pachuca or Tigres
Tijuana-Clausura 2017 Tournament