Puebla spoiled the party of Mazatlan FC’s first game played in Estadio de Futbol Mazatlan (unofficially called “the Kraken”) by crushing them 4-1. Puebla started better, but Mazatlan seemed to rise the occasion before wilting in the second half. Fans celebrated throughout Liga MX, as many see Mazatlan’s arrival as a “stolen” Monarcas Morelia team, and an aggressive twitter campaign from the team didn’t help things. Estadio Mazatlan thus had a bad first impression, especially because cameras showed what a lot of people thought were cockroaches in the field but they turned out to be Pinacate beetles, which are common in the region. Mazatlan FC will now need to pick things up when they face Queretaro in a prime away game to get points, while Puebla will make their home debut against one of the leading candidates for the Liga MX title, Cruz Azul.
The game started with a lot of smoke from the opening fireworks, which were done even with no fans in the stands. Four minutes in, Puebla had the first chance of the game when an Omar Fernandez shot in the area got blocked by a defender. Mazatlan had a couple of threats before the first goal in Kraken Stadium fell and it was by a Puebla player. A good pass by Fernandez found Santiago Ormeño in the area, and he got a left-footed shot past Mazatlan’s keeper Miguel Fraga for the 1-0 lead and a bit of history. With the goal, Ormeño now prints his name as the first goal scorer in the Estadio de Mazatlan.
Now trailing, Mazatlan tried to battle back but couldn’t get much done. Yet they kept at it and had more possession. It soon looked like a monologue by Mazatlan but it wouldn’t be long before they finally broke though. After the ball was sent to the area, Cesar Huerta was able to get to it and made a great turn around shot to equalize it at 1-1. It was the first official goal for Mazatlan FC, and so Cesar Huerta also made history with his goal. Almost immediately after that, Mazatlan came close to scoring again when Fernando Aristeguieta made a close range header that forced Puebla’s keeper Nicolas Vikonis to make a great save. Mazatlan kept at, it but never got as good a chance and the game ended tied at halftime.
The second half started and Puebla came out strong with a dangerous chance a minute in. Mazatlan answered back and came close with a cross that didn’t find a Mazatlan player in the area. Then Puebla’s Christian Tabo got pushed by defender Nicolas Diaz and the ref called a penalty kick. Daniel Arreola took the PK and with a left footed shot, scored the 2-1. Mazatlan tried to get back and subbed out Candido Ramirez for Martin Rodriguez while Puebla did the same with Ormeño for Amaury Escoto. Mazatlan came close twice when Aristeguieta just missed a cross in the area. He then proceeded to the rebound of a couple of players but his low shot was saved by Vikonis. Mazatlan came close again after Vikonis made a mistake off a corner kick and left the ball bouncing near the goal, but a Puebla defender was able to clear the ball. Mazatlan went into desperation mode in the final minutes, opening itself up for counter attacks. One of them was an incredible miss when Daniel Ramirez made a great run and sent a great pass the left Javier Salas alone in front of the goalkeeper, but he had a terrible shot that went wide in one of the worst misses of the week. Puebla wouldn’t miss in their next counter when a great combination play between Osvaldo Martinez and Ramirez was finished by Martinez with a right footed shot past Fraga for the goal that made the game 3-1. Mazatlan looked finished and once again a great counter attack by Salas was finished with a great pass into the area to a sliding Amaury Escoto, who connected to score and place the final score of 4-1. The whistle blew and the game ended with Puebla in high spirits and Mazatlan embarrassed in every way.
The start of Mazatlan FC couldn’t have started in a worse way. Not only was it a bad loss, but it came against a team with one of the weaker squads in Liga MX. Coach Francisco Palencia will be questioned severely, especially after the good job done by his predecessor (when the team was Monarcas Morelia) Pablo Guede. The team looked flat and got countered by a surprising Puebla team. Now it’s in the records of the stadium that they lost badly against Puebla. Meanwhile Puebla set a great win for the history books and it propels them to first place in Liga MX, although only by a goal. They will have a tough match with Cruz Azul and being on top probably won’t last long. But for the time being, they must be happy with what they did in Sinaloa.