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Match recap: Club Tijuana 1, Club Necaxa 0

Another solid performance from Tijuana sees them win their 2018 Liga MX Clausura home opener.

Tijuana v Necaxa - Torneo Clausura 2018 Liga MX Photo by Fausto Vargas/Jam Media/Getty Images

A screamer from Luís Chávez and another solid defensive performance see Tijuana get their first win of the 2018 Liga MX Clausura.

Gustavo Bou had a rip at goal early in the match, cutting in from the left and shooting high and hard.Marcelo Barovero did well to tip the ball over the top of the net however, and the sides remained scoreless.

In the ninth minute, Nacho Malcorra hit Bou in stride on a square ball inside the box, but Bou didn’t strike it cleanly and his shot went wide of the net.

In the 15th minute, Martín Barragán hit a solid shot but it was right at Gibran Lajud, who pushed the shot out easily.

In the 24th minute, Luís Chávez took a shot from about 30 yards out that Marcelo Barovero misjudged. The ball hit off of the goalkeeper’s hands and in for Xolos’ first goal of the 2018 Clausura.

The week at home did wonders for Xolos, as they looked much more cohesive as a unit. The passes were more fluid than they were against Cruz Azul, and there seemed to be a plan both offensively and defensively. Necaxa though still looked like they were stuck in neutral, much like they had the week prior against Veracruz. Because they couldn’t seem to get much going offensively, Xolos wound up getting the much better chances during the first half.

Necaxa’s best chance of the first half was perhaps the most telling - after finally regaining possession from Tijuana in the 44th minute, Martín Barragán had a good shot on goal that Gibran Lajud saved easily and was ruled offside as well.

The start of the second half was more of the same for Tijuana. Xolos were able to retain possession and keep pressuring Los Rayos. At times it looked like Necaxa were down a man with how easily Xolos were able to move the ball.

In the 56th minute, Juan Iturbe was carted off of the field after colliding hard with a Necaxa player. Norteamericano Alejandro Guido was subbed on for Iturbe, and the complexion of the match changed. With Necaxa substituting Roberto Alvarado on for Felipe Gallegos, Necaxa was able to get some sort of offense going.

In the 60th minute, Lajud made a fantastic diving save on a redirected shot in on net. This was the best chance of the second half for Necaxa, as their offense withered as time went on.

Tijuana v Necaxa - Torneo Clausura 2018 Liga MX
Gibran Lajud had another solid performance for Tijuana, making several fantastic saves to keep a second consecutive clean sheet.
Photo by Jam Media/Getty Images

In the 70th minute, Nacho Malcorra hit a perfect low cross across the front of the goal, but Juan Lucero whiffed on it and Pantera Bou couldn’t corral it and the chance was wasted.

Xolos played rather conservatively up by only one goal, opting to keep numbers back behind the ball. That said, they were able to turn the ball around quickly and get runs going toward Barovero. Deep into stoppage, Lajud made another fantastic diving save to keep Los Rayos off the board. On the corner kick, Lajud would be beaten but it was adjudged to be offside. Miller Bolaños would also have a goal called offside as time expired, but it didn’t matter as Xolos got their first win of the season.

Xolos head to Monterrey to face Rayados next Saturday, while Necaxa hosts Mineros de Zacatepec in Copa MX play on Tuesday and Chiva next Saturday.

Club Tijuana: Gibran Lajud; Damián Pérez, Juan Carlos Valenzuela, Pablo Aguilar, Michael Orozco (Hiram Muñoz, 89’); Ignacio Malcorra (Miller Bolaños, 71’), Luís Chávez, Damián Musto, Juan Iturbe (Alejandro Guido, 54’); Juan Lucero, Gustavo Bou

Club Necaxa: Marcelo Barovero; Miguel Ponce, Mario de Luna, Igor Lichnovsky, Brayan Beckeles; Felipe Gallegos (Roberto Alvarado, 54’), Luis Pérez (Matías Fernández, 67’), Xavier Báez, Daniel Álvarez (Dieter Villalpando, 64’); Martín Barragán, Carlos González

Scoring: Club Tijuana - Luís Chávez (24’); Club Necaxa - None

Disciplinary: Club Tijuana - Michael Orozco (Yellow - 39’), Damián Musto (Yellow - 62’); Club Necaxa - Igor Lichnovsky (Yellow - 29’)