Santos Laguna continued their winning ways, defeating Puebla at Estadio Cuauhtémoc by the score of 1-0. Julio Furch’s header in the 78th minute was the difference maker.
In the fourth minute, Santos winger Brian Lozano hit a shot that gave goalkeeper Moisés Muñoz trouble, however Hugo Rodríguez was there for Puebla to clear the ball off of the line. For a good portion of the first half though, the clubs seemed to be feeling each other out looking for weaknesses. Neither side was able to exploit much of anything other than the occasional long distance hopeful shot.
In the 23rd minute the pace of play started to pick up a bit. An errant clearance fell right to forward Julio Furch. Furch turned and fired on goal on the half-volley, however it went straight into the waiting arms of Muñoz. Puebla would come down the pitch in the next minute, and José “Chepe” Guerrero would hit a low shot on goal that Jonathan Orozco was able to smother.
In the 29th minute, Luis Venegas would get his head on a corner kick but Jona Orozco was able to smother that one on the turf as well. Two minutes later, Brian Lozano sent a header into the box to Julio Furch. Furch chested it to his right, where Lozano continued his run toward. Lozano hit a shot but Muñoz was able to make the stop.
In the 39th minute after some great build up play, Jonathan Rodríguez hit a shot from about 20 yards that whistled just over the bar. Both clubs would wind up having some decent looks at goal in the first half, however both were unable to capitalize on their opportunities.
During the start of the second half, both teams played a bit more conservatively than in the first half. In the 51st minute, Jesús Isijara hit a shot from distance that Muñoz was able to hang on to. In the 65th, Lozano would send a low cross that Muñoz swallowed up. In the 70th minute, Edwin Cetré would play a square ball to Julio Furch. Furch’s shot rose a bit too much and sailed just over the top of the bar.
In the 74th minute, Lozano drove down the left wing and lost the ball to Omar Fernández. Lozano did well to win the ball back and hit a blistering shot that clattered off of the post and out. In the 78th minute a header by Izquierdoz was pushed over the bar by Muñoz. The resulting corner kick would find the head of Julio Furch, who headed the ball past Muñoz and into the net to give Santos the lead late.
There was a bit of controversy in the 87th minute when Jorge Villafaña looked to have committed a foul in the box on former Santos midfielder Alonso Escoboza. Referee Fernando Hernandez immediately blew his whistle and pointed at the spot, however on the replay however it looked like any contact Villafaña made with Escoboza was minimal.
Lucas Cavallini hit the penalty shot hard but far too high and Santos retained the lead.
Into extra time, Alejandro Chumacero hit a rocket of a shot from distance that Jona Orozco was able to hang onto. But it wasn’t enough, and Santos was able to win all three points and will remain atop the Liga MX table for the next two weeks.
While both teams are off next week due to the international break, Puebla will head to Querétaro for their next Liga MX match on March 31. Santos will play Chivas in a friendly at H-E-B Park in Edinburg, Texas on March 23 before heading to Guadalajara to face Atlas on March 30 in Liga MX play.
Club Puebla: Moisés Muñoz, Brayan Angulo, Alonso Zamora, Hugo Rodríguez (Patricio Araujo, 74’), Luis Venegas; Christian Marrugo (Jesús Escoboza, 72’), José Guerrero, Alejandro Chumacero, Francisco Acuña (Omar Fernández, 56’); Christian Tabó, Lucas Cavallini
Santos Laguna: Jonathan Orozco; Jorge Villafaña, Néstor Arauho, Carlos Izquierdoz, José Abella; Brian Lozano (Gerardo Alcoba, 82’), José Vázquez, Osvaldo Martínez, Jesús Isisjara (Edwin Cetré, 70’); Jonathan Rodríguez (Diego De Buen, 69’), Julio Furch
Scoring: Club Puebla - None; Santos Laguna - Julio Furch (78’)
Disciplinary: Club Puebla - Christian Tabó (Yellow - 61’); Santos Laguna - None