While last night’s SuperClásico garnered all of the attention - and perhaps deservedly so - the 3-3 draw at Estadio Olímpico was perhaps one of the wildest matches in recent history and a fun watch for the neutral fan.
Just eleven minutes in, Gibran Lajud came up huge for Xolos. Pablo Barrera hit a cross from the right wing. Lajud rose up and swatted it away as Javier Cortés was streaking in from the left. Bryan Rabello was able to get back on the ball and have a shot that Lajud quickly gobbled up.
In the 23rd minute, Pumas goalkeeper Alejandro Pikolín Palacios came almost out to midfield to clear a ball. He was beaten to it by Milton Caraglio, and the ball fell to Avilés Hurtado who chipped the ball in the net despite a heroic effort by Darío Verón to try and keep it out, and Xolos were up 1-0.
Aside from the one mistake from Pikolín, both sides really cancelled one another out. Tijuana’s high-octane offense was often stymied by Pumas’ staunch defense, while Tijuana’s defense was able to keep Pumas from making the final pass to get good opportunities on net.
In the second half, Tijuana was able to blow the game wide open after Pumas switched out Kevin Escamilla for a more offensive-minded Matías Britos. Not long after the switch, Víctor Malcorra hit a bomb from about 30 yards out to put Tijuana up 2-0.
Just four minutes later, Guido Rodríguez would hit almost the exact same shot from almost the exact same spot, and Xolos was up 3-0.
At 3-0, you’d think the game was over. But you’d be wrong.
In the 72nd minute, Nicolás Castillo was able to get Pumas on the board with a beautiful scissor kick.
Pumas was then awarded a penalty in the 78th minute that Pablo Barrera converted. The call might have been a bit soft, but it was awarded nonetheless, and Pumas was within one.
Then in the 81st, Pumas was able to tie the match when Juan Carlos Valenzuela had a cross hit off of his torso and in past teammate Gibran Lajud to tie what was an absolutely crazy second half.
There was perhaps some controversy at the end of the game when Matías Britos ran screaming into the referee after a no-call. While Britos was not charged with a foul, he may still be suspended by the league for his misconduct.
Pumas: Alejandro Palacios: Alan Mendoza, Gerardo Alcoba, Darío Verón, Josecarlos van Rankin; Abraham González, Kevin Escamilla (Matías Britos, 52’); Bryan Rabello, Pablo Barrera, Javier Cortés; Nicolás Castillo
Xolos: Gibran Lajud; Damián Pérez, Emanuel Aguilera, Juan Carlos Valenzuela, Juan Carlos Núñez, Paul Arriola; Víctor Malcorra (Juan Martín Lucero ,87’), Joe Corona, Guido Rodríguez; Avilés Hurtado, Milton Caraglio (Henry Martín ,88’)
Scoring: Pumas - Nicolás Castillo (71’), Pablo Barrera (78’, Penalty), Juan Carlos Valenzuela (81’, Own Goal); Xolos - Avilés Hurtado (23’), Víctor Malcorra (61’), Guido Rodríguez (65’),
Disciplinary: Pumas - Nicolás Castillo (Yellow, 37’), Bryan Rabello (Yellow, 69’), Javier Cortés (Yellow, 78’); Xolos - Juan Carlos Valenzuela (Yellow, 38’)