Pumas was finally able to get a win by defeating Puebla 2-0 at home. Pumas gave their best performance of the season, and it was enough to finally get a win that relieves a lot of pressure from the team and Coach Andres Lillini after a terrible start to the season. Pumas fans hope this is a turning point and the team will now face a tough trip to face Toluca, while Puebla returns home to face Queretaro.
The game started with the return of goalkeeper Alfredo Talavera to action with Pumas. Pumas was the first to threaten when Sebastian Saucedo twice got shots that forced Puebla’s goalkeeper Antony Silva to make saves. After the good start from Pumas, the game turned more even as Puebla had more possession, but neither team was creating dangerous opportunities. Pumas then had another chance when Gabriel Torres headed the ball into the area to Juan Ignacio Dinenno, but Dinenno’sheader went well wide. Puebla came close when a good low pass into the area just went inches from finding Fernando Aristeguieta in the area, but it went past him and Talavera. Pumas came close again after a corner kick when the ball was left bouncing in the area, but Dinenno tried to do a bicycle kick and missed, instead fouling a Puebla defender. Pumas came close again when a Marco Garcia cross got deflected into the path of Saucedo, who volleyed the shot but it was saved by Silva. Pumas then made a big mistake when Alan Mozo tried to head the ball back to Talavera and instead gifted it to Maximiliano Araujo, which forced Talavera to foul him and get a yellow card. Luckily Aristeguieta was in the area and Araujo was not the last man, or Talavera would have been red carded. The game was scoreless at halftime and although Pumas had played the best so far in the season, they still hadn’t found a way to score as Dinenno continued to struggle.
The second half started with Pumas hoping to finally do something with all of their possession. Pumas came the closest it had in the game when off a free kick, Leonel Lopez got off a great shot that Silva had to save into the post. The ball fell to a wide open Gabriel Torres, who headed the ball wide when he had an open net. Puebla then got their best opportunity when Christian Tabo got the ball and went into the area, but his shot went just wide. Puebla would make three substitutions by subbing out Amaury Escoto, Fernando Aristeguieta, and Maximiliano Araujo for Pablo Para, Daniel Alvarez, and Guillermo Martinez. Pumas countered by subbing out Sebastian Saucedo and Higor Meritao for Washington Corozo and Cristian Battocchio. Pumas then had another chance when Dinenno got a left footed shot that was saved by Silva, with Torres failing to get to the rebound. Pumas was playing their best in the match and season but they still couldn’t score. Pumas then subbed out Leonel Lopez and Gabriel Torres for Amaury Garcia and Favio Alvarez. A minute in, Washington Corozo got into the area and made a great dummy move, getting off a left footed shot that went past Silva for the 1-0 lead. Puebla subbed out Ivo Vasquez for Gustavo Ferrareis. Corozo then got into the area and looked to be dragged down, but the ref didn’t immediately give a penalty kick. After a stoppage in play he then went to VAR and corrected his decision giving the penalty. Juan Ignacio Dinenno stepped up to take and with a powerful right footed shot, put it past Silva to end an incredibly tough scoring drought. Pumas subbed out Marco Garcia for Erik Lira. Puebla tried to respond with a cross into the area, in which Martinez just failed to get to the ball. Then off a corner kick, they would got a header right to Talavera. That was the last one, and Pumas was able to hold on to their first victory of the season.
Pumas gave the best performance of the season and were the deserved winners against a struggling Puebla. The best news is that Dinenno was able to score and end a drought that was really hurting him. He was very emotional when he scored, and hopefully for him he improves on his level. Another piece of good news for Lillini was the impact by Corozo, who scored and got the foul that let to the penalty. Corozo had missed games with an injury and is a great addition for the team when he isn’t injured. Pumas will now face a tough game against Toluca away, even when that team has slowed down after a great start. Puebla meanwhile will need to improve as they deservedly lost. The fact they have lost both matches against two of the teams who have made news because of their struggles (Chivas and Pumas) means the team isn’t getting good results. Puebla will need to bounce back in their home match against Queretaro, or it will have fans turning against them fast after a great past season where they got to the semifinals.