Heading towards the end of the first half, a goal oozing technique by Javier Aquino and the red card to Renato Ibarra mounted a significant advantage for los Tigres over Las Aguilas del America in a 3-0 rout. In its first loss of the season, the America offense had its chances but ultimately failed to capitalize. Here’s my three takeaways of America’s loss to Tigres.
1)Hugo Gonzalez may have given the starting spot back
Understandably, Gonzalez had to defend more shots with a man less in the game, but all three goals by Tigres served themselves up more by costly errors from Gonzalez than errors by the defense. Javier Aquino, Andre-Pierre Gignac, and Ismael Sosa scored by exploiting Gonzalez’s positioning and anticipation. Gonzalez left enormous gaps of space to generously feed a strong Tigres attack. He had a few plays towards the end where he prevented the score from going higher than where it ultimately stood, but the final goal by Sosa in the 93rd minute once again showed Gonzalez putting himself in an unfavorable position. Sosa had one defender behind him and two to the side on the play. Gonzalez could have let the defense try to handle Sosa. Instead, Gonzalez chased after Sosa to leave the net open to the right. With Moisès Muñoz ready to return after spending two weeks on the sidelines because of injury, Gonzalez’s time as the starting goalkeeper looks like it most likely relies on how Muñoz feels.
2)Coordination was lacking
At times, I couldn’t remember if Darwin Quintero started the game or sat on the bench. He started and left at the 60-minute mark. The same can be said about Rubens Sambueza. Aside from a header too high from Silvio Romero, Las Aguilas lacked clear chances and when America needed more experienced players like Sambueza and Quintero to lift the offense, it suffered. Oribe Peralta’s absence showed and the lack of understanding on where to deliver the ball showed as the team couldn’t go aggressively on the counter. If America wants to avoid falling further behind during Peralta’s Olympic tenure, its offense needs to understand where its headed.
3)It only gets harder from here
Ibarra’s red card immediately impacted America and its impact will linger past the 3-0 loss. Headed to Veracruz next Friday for their first away game of the season, America’s roster has turned into a revolving door of exits and returns in just three weeks. Ibarra’s red card remains up for debate but for a team dwindling down its options, America needs players to avoid tacking on another disciplinary loss because without Peralta, Michale Arroyo and now Ibarra, the offense hollowed itself versus Tigres.