Monterrey Take First Leg in Apertura Championship Over Cruz Azul

Facing a 3-1 deficit at the half Monterrey pulled off the comeback to win the first leg of the Apertura Championship.
The game looked to be Cruz Azul's. It was all done by halftime. But Monterrey did not see it that way. The score was 3-1 in favor of Cruz Azul at the half. Monterrey had virtually no shot on goal in the first half and looked done for.

Los Rayados; however, found a new found energy which they used to pull off the comeback and take a lead into the second leg. Monterrey came back to win it by a score of 4-3.

Humberto Suazo could have very well played his last game in the Technologico as he has expressed his interest in playing in Europe before the start of the World Cup.

First Half

A victory away from home would have been vital for Cruz Azul and their title hopes. La Maquina caught on fire early on but not in a positive way.

After only three minutes of play, Cruz Azul scored but in the opposite goal. Humberto Suazo crossed in the ball from corner and Cruz Azul’s top scorer Emanuel Villa knocked it into the net to send Monterrey up 1-0.  Villa had 17 goals in the regular season and scored his first own goal in his Mexican league career.

Things looked to be going sour for Cruz Azul but a three minute span changed the face of the game.

La Maquina scored this time in the right goal. Cruz Azul was awarded a corner and Rogelio Chavez took it. The ball flew down the middle and Christian Riveros found it and put it away. Things were now tied at one a piece.

Monterrey looked out of place while Cruz Azul benefited from the rain.

Jaime Lozano tried his luck in the 13th minute. Lozano kicked a free kick which no one touched and spiked dangerously towards goal. Thankfully for Monterrey, Jonathan Orozco followed the play and made the save.

Los Rayados could not develop anything up top and also had difficulties in the back.

Christian Riveros scored once more in the 17th minute to give Cruz Azul a one goal lead. Once the again the tandem of Rogelio Chavez and Christian Riveros connected. Chavez sent the ball in from a free kick and Riveros tracked it down to put it away.

Monterrey looked to get back on terms thanks to Felipe Baloy but his goal was annulled thanks to foul inside the box.

Cruz Azul added one more before the half ended.

Emanuel Villa scored for Cruz Azul on the 34th minute. After a couple of bounces inside the box the ball fell in front of Villa who had a simple tap in. Villa made up for his own goal as his team went ahead at the half, 3-1.

Second Half

Monterrey came out with a new found energy to start the second half.

Just two minutes after the restart Monterrey scored their first of the night. Severo Meza drove the ball down the right side and sent in a low cross. The ball found a trailing Humberto Suazo who slotted the ball home. Monterrey pulled one back but were still down 3-2.

Monterrey controlled the pace in the second half as Cruz Azul fell off the radar.

Los Rayados tied things up in the 70th minute. Osvaldo Martinez won the ball down the right side and sent in a cross. The ball found the head of Sergio Santana, who barely nudged it to send it in. Monterrey pulled even as a stunned Cruz Azul looked on.

Monterrey came close to taking the lead in the 77th minute. Aldo de Nigirs headed the ball inside of the box but his attempt went just wide of the mark.

Jonathan Orozco was picking dandelions in the back as Cruz Azul had no offense in the second half.

Monterrey was not going to be denied at home and pulled off the come back in the dying minutes.

Humberto Suazo scored his second in the 88th minute. Jose de Jesus Corona made a grave mistake when the ball sipped past his hands and legs thanks to a nudge by Osvaldo Martinez. The ball was left in front of an open goal and El Chupete did not miss.

Monterrey pulled off the comeback and won the game, 4-3.

Sylvestre Adame,

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