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Match recap: Santos Laguna 5, Gallos Blancos de Querétaro 0

Santos puts forth a total, dominant effort to down Querétaro 5-0.

Santos Laguna v Queretaro - Playoff Torneo Guard1anes 2021 Liga MX Photo by Manuel Guadarrama/Getty Images

Santos Laguna played almost flawless soccer, downing Querétaro 5-0 in the repechaje round of the 2021 Guard1anes playoffs. Eduardo “Mudo” Aguirre had a brace, Fernando Gorriarán had a goal and an assist, and Diego Valdés and Ayrton Preciado added goals as well while at the other end Carlos Acevedo made several saves to keep a clean sheet.

Santos started out on the front foot, taking the game to Querétaro and forcing them to commit fouls often. They looked dynamic, causing Querétaro to retreat and defend early and often. The few times Gallos had possession they resorted to long balls that had more hope than purpose. Santos got the first shot of the evening, an effort from Carlos Orrantia that might have been meant more as a leading pass but slowly rolled in on goal before being picked up by Gil Alcalá in the 12th minute. In the 14th, Diego Valdés laid a great ball forward for Eduardo “Mudo” Aguirre. Aguirre and Alcalá got to the ball at about the same time, however it was the goalkeeper who wound up with the worse end of the deal Alcalá was given some attention by the Gallos medical staff and the match continued.

Querétaro got their first chance at goal in the 18th after Félix Torres conceded a free kick deep, but the ensuing shot was read the entire way by Carlos Acevedo, who ended the chance clutching the ball to his chest. At the other end in the 21st minute, Fernando Gorriarán was left in space and unleashed a rocket from distance that beat Alcalá to put Santos on the board.

A minute later and Diego Valdés was left wide open on the left but his shot smashed off of the crossbar. Then in the 24th minute in an almost identical play to the Valdés shot, Gorriarán laid one off to the left for Ayrton Preciado and he hit a tight angle shot that slipped past the outstretched hand of the diving Alcalá.

Querétaro was undeterred however and went back to work. in the 31st, Hugo Silviera went up and put a header on frame, but Acevedo stopped it easily. Minutes later Querétaro made advances on a counterattack, but as the final ball through was headed in to Silveira, Matheus Dória came seemingly out of nowhere. In one motion Dória jumped to intercept the ball and flicked the ball backwards against his own momentum to safety to kill the chance for Gallos.

After the starting whistle Santos almost scored again when Mudo Aguirre went in on Alcalá, however Alcalá made a huge sprawling save and stopped the follow-up shot. Then a minute later Santos kept the pressure on in deep. Diego Valdés played Gorriarán in, and then Gorri slotted it across to Aguirre who knocked it in for the third goal.

Then in the 53rd minute Juan Ferney Otero got a ball in low and hit a shot that just skipped wide of the far post. Then in the 55th Alcalá came up huge with a save on a Valdés shot from close range. The play went to a VAR review because José Doldán appeared to have handled the ball in the box before Valdés shot. Referee Fernando Hernández looked it over for a minute or so and returned to point at the spot. Valdés took the shot from the spot and converted.

Then minutes later Aguirre got his second of the evening when he was able to poke home a bouncing ball in the box off of a corner kick.

In the 67th Daniel Cervantes had a header that went just over goal. Then a minute later Acevedo made a fantastic diving stop on a shot from distance. By this time however the fever pitch had cooled down significantly, with the teams seemingly accepting their respective fates. Santos pressured for a sixth goal, but ultimately ended the night with a 5-0 victory and a happy cadre of fans in a dark stadium with their phone lights held high in song.

Santos Laguna: Carlos Acevedo; Omar Campos, Matheus Dória, Félix Torres (Hugo Rodríguez, 65’), Emilio Orrantia; Alan Cervantes (Roni Prieto, 65’); Fernando Gorriarán (Ismael Govea, 75’); Ayrton Preciado, Diego Valdés, Santiago Muñoz, 71’), Juan Ferney Otero; Eduardo Aguirre (Jesús Ocejo, 75’)

Gallos Blancos de Querétaro: Gil Alcalá; Erik Vera, Alexis Doldán, Daniel Cervantes, Omar Mendoza; Kevin Escamilla, Fernando Madrigal (Aristeo García, 86’); Jefferson Montero (Jonathan Dos Santos, 26’), Ángel Sepúlveda, Luis Valencia (Alejandro Rivero, 86’); Hugo Silviera (Arturo Palma, 86’)

Scoring: Santos Laguna - Fernando Gorriarán (21’), Ayrton Preciado (23’), Eduardo Aguirre (48’, 63’), Diego Valdés (58’ - penalty); Gallos Blancos de Querétaro - None

Disciplinary: Santos Laguna - Félix Torres (Yellow - 17’), Juan Ferney Otero (Yellow - 78’), Hugo Rodríguez (Yellow - 80’); Gallos Blancos de Querétaro - Fernando Madrigal (Yellow - 10’), Ángel Sepúlveda (Yellow - 45’), Hugo Magallanes, (Yellow - 89’)