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Chivas battle rain to rescue tie against FC Juarez

Chivas battled back to get a 2-2 tie at home against FC Juarez.

Chivas v FC Juarez - Torneo Grita Mexico A21 Liga MX Photo by Alfredo Moya/Jam Media/Getty Images

Chivas scored twice to get their first tie of the season at home against FC Juarez by a 2-2 score. It was an interesting match in which both teams went on the offense as they battled a big rain storm in the second half to grab the tie. It was the first point for FC Juarez under new Coach Ricardo “Tuca” Ferretti, while Chivas might be disappointed after getting an away win against Puebla. It’s a better result however than their loss against Atletico San Luis in their home debut. Chivas will have a tough visit next week to Torreon to face Santos, while after two games in Guadalajara, FC Juarez will return home where they will host Tijuana.

The first half started with Chivas coming out with a very weakened squad, while FC Juarez came out with a squad closer to their normal squad. After a couple of even minutes, Fabian Castillo made a good play that was ended with a pass to Gabriel Fernandez who seemed to have been dropped by Eduardo Torres. The referee gave a penalty kick. Fernandez stepped up to take it and hit a right footed shot past by Chivas goalkeeper Antonio Rodriguez for the 1-0 lead. Replays showed that Rodriguez got to the ball and should have stopped it. Chivas tried to respond and would do so a couple of minutes later. After a cross into the area went past all the defenders, it found Carlos Cisneros who mis-hit the ball. It slid however to a wide open Angel Zaldivar, who scored the tap in goal past FC Juarez goalkeeper Hugo Gonzalez to make it 1-1. Chivas continued to create chances after a terrible display from FC Juarez, and Zaldivar was given the time and space to get off a great left footed shot from outside the area that hit the post. Chivas continued to have more possession, although FC Juarez had their good counter attacks. Chivas almost had a wonder goal after Zaldivar, who almost took advantage of Gonzalez being out of place to lob a shot from way outside of the area but it went wide. Chivas had a great opportunity when a great pass into the area seemed to find Carlos Cisneros, but he failed to control the ball and allowed Gonzalez to get to it before conceding a one-on-one.

The second half started with Chivas subbing out Juan Aguayo for Pavel Perez, while FC Juarez subbed out Jose Madueña for Blas Armoa. Then a couple of minutes in off a free kick, FC Juarez crossed the ball into the area where the ball was lowered down before falling into the path of Gabriel Fernandez, who got a right footed shot past Rodriguez for the 2-1. Replays showed that it looked the ball had been lowered by deflecting the ball with the arm of an FC Juarez, player but the referee upheld the goal. There was more controversy a minute later when it looked like a Chivas player was brought down in the box but the referee decided to not give the penalty. Chivas responded by subbing out Antonio Briseño and Jesus Molina for Jesus Godinez and Sergio Flores in a very offensive move. Minutes later it started to rain heavily, with the rainstorm altering the conditions of the field. Conditions would worsen with the storm to the point it hurt the vision of the players and started to ruin the field with flooding being a very real possibility. After a scramble in the area, Zaldivar got off a shot that forced Gonzalez to make a save. FC Juarez then subbed out goal scorer Gabriel Fernandez for Angel Lopez. Chivas started to pressure and came close when Gilberto Sepulveda got a header, but it went wide. Chivas then made their final moves by subbing out Alejandro Mayorga and Eduardo Torres for Miguel Angel Ponce and Jesus Sanchez. FC Juarez would sub out Fabian Castillo for Francisco Nevarez. Chivas continued to pressure, but like past seasons there was not much of an offensive idea. Then when it looked bleakest for Chivas, the ball got to Jesus Godinez after a back heel pass from Zaldivar. He went wide open in a one-on-one against Gonzalez, and with a right footed shot he scored to get the 2-2 draw. It looked like he was offside, but replays showed him to be barely onside. Chivas would later get close to scoring again when a header was deflected close to Gonzalez but just wide. It turned out to be the last play and Chivas rescued a tie in a rainy day.

While it wasn’t the result that Chivas fans wanted, it wasn’t a bad performance although it was against weak Liga MX opposition. Yet Chivas fought and was the better team, which is a notable thing. The reality though is that Chivas has a very weak starting linuep and although it will get a boost by the return of Alexis Vega and Uriel Antuna, it will be tough for it to be a contender. The best news was the goal by Jesus Godinez after a couple of seasons that had the prospect lower his pedigree to the point of not making even the National team squad for the U24 CONCACAF Championship, even less for the Olympic team. If Chivas gets him back to his promising level, it will help the team a lot. FC Juarez got a great point after losing their opener to Toluca and their first away match to Atlas. They seem to be improving under new coach Ricardo Ferretti. Still their squad doesn’t seem to be that good and Ferretti will need to do a lot of work with a squad nowhere near the one he had in Tigres.