A Juninho penalty sealed Tigres a narrow win over Club America in the first leg of their 2017 Liga MX Apertura Semifinal.
Thus-far, this is still not the imperious Tigres side of previous seasons, but a second half goal has Ricardo “Tuca” Ferretti’s side 90 minutes away from another Liga MX Final.
After a quiet first half, the referee assumed the limelight when a penalty was called for a dubious handball inside the box. From the resulting spot kick, Juninho turned the ball into the back of the net to fire the visitors into the lead.
The goal added a spring in Tigres’ step, and they came close to doubling the lead when Enner Valencia escaped down the right-hand side, only for Eduardo Vargas to miss the target from close range.
Club America certainly had chances of their own, and they improved as the game wore on. Their best chance arrived in the 84th minute when Mateus Uribe unleashed a spectacular bicycle kick that came within inches of beating Nahuel Guzman.
At the end, though, the match finished in favor of the visitors, as Tigres take an away goal advantage to the Estadio Universitario, where Club America will need to score twice to have any chance of progressing to the Final.