Pumas took a break from Liga MX to travel to Orlando, Florida to play in the Florida’s Cup, where they lost 1-0 against English Premier League club Everton FC. Everton was the superior team and got the deserved the win against a Pumas side that showed spirit but once again had a terrible offensive display. Pumas will now travel to Monterrey where they will face Rayados team on Monday.
The first half started with Pumas coming out with a strong starting lineup including the Pumas debut of Cristian Battocchio. Everton came out strong as well, and Moises Kean had a shot on goal that forced Pumas goalkeeper Julio Gonzalez to make a save. Everton had been the better team early, but slowly Pumas started to get more possession. They had their first chance when Juan Ignacio Dinenno got off a long range shot that forced Everton’s goalkeeper Asmir Begovic to make a great save. Then off of a counter attack, Moises Kean went with a one-on-one and got a shot that forced Gonzalez to make a great save, but the ball went under him and right into the path of Kean, who just tapped the ball into the empty net for the 1-0 lead. After the goal, Everton took control of the match. After a half bicycle kick volley by Kean hit Erik Lira’s hand, Kean protested wildly and with good reason. It looked like a penalty should have been awarded, but even worse it should’ve been a corner kick and that wasn’t granted either. Later on another shot from Everton just went inches from going in, but then Pumas answered back with a shot by Dinenno that was saved by Begovic. Everton took the very deserved lead to halftime.
The second half started with Pumas subbing out Erik Lira, Gabriel Torres and Nicolas Freire for Leonel Lopez, Sebstian Saucedo, and Julio Barragan. Everton meanwhile made 9 substitutions, as is common during preseason games. Pumas had a new attitude, taking advantage of Everton’s numerous moves and got some attacks, including a shot from outside the area from Battocchio that just went wide. After a clash, Jose Rogerio looked to be injured and needed help to get off the field. He would eventually be subbed out for Emanuel Montejano. Everton once again gained control of the match and twice forced Gonzalez to make great saves. Gonzalez had to make a great save of a shot from inside the area from James Rodriguez. Pumas finally had a good shot from Leonel Lopez that forced new Everton goalkeeper, Joao Virginia, to make a diving save. Minutes later Lopez made another, better shot that Virginia made an even better save on. Gonzalez then made another save when he blocked a close range shot from Jonjoe Kenny. Pumas finished the game with more possession, but they weren’t able to create much danger.
Even with it being a preseason friendly, Everton FC displayed the EPL’s superiority by being the better team over 90 minutes against a Pumas side that hasn’t had a great start to their Liga MX season. Pumas improved somewhat, but they made some mistakes and paid for them dearly. Even when they played well, it was Everton’s game and goalkeeper Julio Gonzalez was the busiest player for Pumas, although he was at fault for the goal in part along with Nicolas Freire. Pumas now will have a tough visit to face a Monterrey side that also needs to come back after getting tied in injury time at home against Puebla. For now, Pumas failed to get one upset against Everton, and will have a tough time doing so against Monterrey.