Pumas Signs Partnership With Venados FC

UNAM Pumas today announced they have signed a sports agreement deal with Venados FC, currently playing in Ascenso MX. Through this deal, Pumas will loan some of their younger players to Venados to gain a better playing & developmental experience than most or all are currently getting in the U-20 division, but also allowing them to live in Merida, in the Yucatan Peninsula, considered one of the best cities in Mexico in terms of quality of life. This is the start of a medium-to-long-term agreement between the clubs that will allow better development & competition for the young players but also help reduce the Venados operating expenses in the area, which is considered a win-win for all parties involved.

Source: Universidad Nacional/Pumas press release

Clausura 2017 Round 17 Results: Puebla 1, Pumas 0

In the one game this weekend with no playoff implications, the two bottom teams faced off looking to end disappointing seasons on a positive note. Although it won’t get them out of last place, Puebla finished with a season ending 1-0 win at Pumas. Francisco Torres scored the only goal at the start of the second half. The home shutout was symbolic of Pumas’ epic late collapse-they finished with a 4-game losing streak, 5 losses in their last 6 games, and only 1 goal in that span, and they were shut out over those last 4 losses.

Game Stats:
Goals-Francisco Torres (Puebla, 45′, 3rd of tournament)
Shots on Goal-Puebla 1
Corner kicks-Puebla 1
Amarillas-Pumas 3 (Jesus Gallardo, 40′, Javier Cortes, 50′, Gerardo Alcoba, 54′)

Venue: Estadio Olimpico Universitario, Mexico City
Attendance: 15,200 (31.4% capacity)

Next up:
Pumas-Apertura 2017 Tournament
Puebla-Apertura 2017 Tournament

Clausura 2017 Round 16 Results: Morelia 4, Pumas 0

If you were among those like me who thought Pumas did themselves in for the tournament with their undisciplined loss last week that cost them their head coach and top goal-scorer among others, you were so right. A depleted Pumas team visited a motivated Morelia team on life support and it added up to an embarrassing 4-0 blowout loss for the visitors. As was the case on several occasions this half, Raul Ruidiaz was again the hero for the hometown team, pacing Morelia with the second hat trick of this half but first since opening weekend-first converting a PENAL! in the 22nd minute, then adding 78th & 85th minute goals before being subbed out with a couple minutes left in the game. Andy Polo added the other Morelia goal in the second half. The loss eliminated Pumas from playoff contention as they played without top scorer Nicolas Castillo and coach Juan Pellerini, while Morelia improved its chances of survival beyond this year-the only way they can now be demoted is a loss in their final game combined with a Jaguares win. Morelia may need Ruidiaz to be the hero next week as Monarcas have to play for survival at Monterrey.

Game Stats:
Goals-Raul Ruidiaz 3 (Morelia, 22′, Penalty Kick, 78′, 85′, 8th of tournament), Andy Polo (Morelia, 48′, 2nd of tournament)
Shots on Goal-Morelia 1, Pumas 1
Corner kicks-Pumas 8, Morelia 3
Amarillas-Pumas 3 (Alfredo Saldivar, 20′, Pablo Jaquez, 24′, Joscearlos Van Rankin, 66′), Morelia 2 (Emanuel Loeschbor, 9′, Carlos Sosa, 20′)

Venue: Estadio Morelos, Morelia, Michoacan
Attendance; 31,123 (88.9% capacity)

Next up:
Morelia-at Monterrey (5/6)
Pumas-Puebla (5/7)

Clausura 2017 Round 15 Results: Veracruz 2, Pumas 0

In a game that kept their playoff hopes alive, and maybe saving them from demotion, Veracruz kept it’s late-season bounceback going with an easy 2-0 win at Pumas. The first goal came in bizarre fashion-while Pumas was attempting to clear the ball out of the goal area, a defender kicked the ball out but unknowingly kicked it right into the back of a Pumas teammate’s head! OUCH! Leandro Velazquez got the ricochet and put it past the goalie for the first score. Cristian Pellerini added the insurance goal in the 84th minute. The real story may be how Pumas was extremely undisciplined-first in the 32nd minute, Dario Veron kicked the ball unintentionally into the leg of a nearby Veracruz defender then while going for the ball inadvertently stomped on the player’s foot-Veron got stomped with a Rojas! HE GONE! Then right before the game ended, the finally-back-in-action Nicolas Castillo made his return a short one thanks to a low scissor-kick takedown on a Veracruz player with the ball-Rojas! HE GONE! And apparently right before that Pumas coach Juan Palencia had some not-so-nice words for the refs, so Rojas! HE GONE! That’s a total of THREE Rojas in a game, very unusual. The pending suspensions may very well seal Pumas’ fate and cost them a playoff spot. Veracruz, meanwhile, climbs to only 2 points out but, more importantly, now pulls 2 points ahead of Morelia and 1 point ahead of Jaguares in the battle to avoid demotion. Since their 6-game losing streak Veracruz has now won 2 of 3 to get back in it. But the hard part is still ahead, their road to the playoffs and avoiding demotion now goes through a possible death march-Monterrey and Tijuana. And another thing that won’t help Veracruz possibly-the shorthanded Pumas, certainly without top scorer Castillo and coach Pellerini among others, has to go to Morelia next week.

Game Stats:
Goals-Leandro Velazquez (Veracruz, 38′, 1st of tournament), Cristian Pellerini (Veracruz, 84′, 1st of tournament)
Shots on Goal-Nil
Corner kicks-Veracruz 7, Pumas 2
Amarillas-Pumas 1 (Josecarlos Van Rankin, 86′)
Rojas-Pumas 3 (Dario Veron, 32′, Juan Pellerini, coach, 88′, Nicolas Castillo, 89′)

Venue: Estadio Olimpico Universitario, Mexico City
Attendance: 22,400 (46.3% capacity)

Next up:
Pumas-at Morelia (4/29)
Veracruz-Monterrrey (4/28)

Pumas-Barrera Has Successful Surgery

In a press release today, Pumas announced midfielder Pablo Barrera had successful surgery to repair an ACL & MCL injury in his left knee. The surgery, performed yesterday, is expected to keep Barrera out 6 months but he can begin rehab in 2 weeks. That timeframe would put Barrera out until late in the Apertura 2017 Tournament. Barrera played in 11 games this half before the injury, all starts, and scored 2 goals.

Source: UNAM/Universidad Nacional (Pumas) Press Release

Clausura 2017 Round 14 Results: Tigres 4, Pumas 0

The twice-annual Clasico Universitario took place yesterday, featuring the always-interesting matchup between UNAM & UANL aka Tigres & Pumas. And it seemed to be the spark Tigres needed to continue its late playoff push, playing maybe their best game this half with a surprising 4-0 lambasting of Pumas. Ismael Sosa put Tigres ahead in the 14th minute, then Jurgen Damm scored back-to-back goals in the 52nd & 64th minutes. And just to offer Tigres fans more hope, Andre-Pierre Gignac added a score in the 74th minute to match his first-half goal total of 5 with 3 games left. The result pulls Tigres to just one point out of the top 8.

Game Stats:
Goals-Ismael Sosa (Tigres, 14′, 3rd of tournament), Jurgen Damm 2 (Tigres, 52′, 64′, 3rd of tournament), Andre-Pierre Gignac (Tigres, 74′, 5th of tournament)
Shots on Goal-Nil
Corner kicks-Tigres 3, Pumas 2
Amarillas-Pumas 3 (Kevin Escamilla, 1′, Abraham Gonzalez, 27′, Pablo Jaquez, 59′), Tigres 1 (Damm, 66′)

Venue: Estadio Universitario, San Nicolas de los Garza, Nuevo Leon
Attendance: 41,396 (99.4% capacity)

Next up:
Tigres-at Monterrey (4/22)
Pumas-Veracruz (4/23)

Clausura 2017 Round 10 Results: Atlas 1, Pumas 1

The last matchup last night was another one with two teams looking to solidify their playoff chances. Neither succeeded as Atlas & Pumas played to a 1-1 tie. Clifford Abogaye scored Atlas’s goal in the 14th minute, also his first career goal in his rookie campaign, while Pumas got the equalizer from Matias Britos in the 28th minute. Very little happened in the second half.

Game Stats:
Goals-Clifford Abogaye (Atlas, 14′, 1st of tournament), Matias Britos (Pumas, 28′, 3rd of tournament)
Shots on Goal-Atlas 2
Corner kicks-Pumas 2
Amarillas-Pumas 1 (Pablo Jaquez, 29′)

Venue: Estadio Jalisco, Guadalajara, Jalisco
Attendance: 18,908 (35% capacity)

Next up:
Atlas-Santos (4/15)
Pumas-at Tigres (4/15)