Pumas saved the best for last as they finally got a victory in their last match of the Copa por Mexico, defeating America by a 2-0 score. Against their biggest rival, Pumas gave their best performance despite being eliminated prior to the match. They now will wait for the start of the Clausura 2023 season while America will face their other city rival in Cruz Azul in a match they must win to play in the tournament final.
The match started with Pumas threatening and going in front, as a great pass into the area from Salvio found Gustavo del Prete, who lobbed the ball over Jimenez for the goal and the 1-0 lead. After America lost the ball, Pumas got it into the area but from close range, Salvio sent his shot well wide. Off a counter attack, Leonardo Suarez made a great left-footed shot that forced Pumas’ goalkeeper Julio Gonzalez to make a great save. In the ensuing corner kick, the ball would eventually fall to Suarez again, whose left-footed shot went just wide. Daniel Gonzalez would answer back with a shot that was saved by Jimenez. A cross into the area found Diego Valdes who had a chance to score a tap in, but incredibly sent his ball wide in an amazing miss. The halftime whistle blew and although America had fought back, Pumas remained in the lead.
The second half started with a Pumas chance when Juan Ignacio Dinenno got off a shot that went wide. A cross from Ruvalcaba almost got deflected in, but also went wide. America came close off a free kick when Juarez got a header in the area that Gonzalez had some trouble with, but was able to save in the end. Another great cross almost turned into a chance, but Arturo Ortiz was able to clear. A minute in, Gael Rodriguez had a great chance when he got the ball in the area, but his right-footed shot was saved by Jimenez. Then, off a 3 vs 1 counter attack, Rodriguez attempted a cross, but it instead turned into a shot that went over the head of Jimenez and into the net for the 2-0. It became a great goal, although the debate of whether he tried to cross or lob it over the keeper starts immediately. On another counter, Ruvalcaba almost went for the 1 vs 1, but Jimenez was able to get to the ball and take it from his feet.
The loss against Pumas is trouble for Club America as they not only drop to 2nd place, but now must win on Tuesday in their final group match if they wish to play the final against Chivas. Although the Aguilas fought and at times evened the playing field, overall Pumas got the deserved win and were the slightly better team. Puente Jr’s side ended their time in the Copa por Mexico getting their first win and gave their best match of the tournament. They will hope to have a good start in their new season as they now turn full focus to the Clausura 2023 while America will have to play a final to get the three points and play the Superclasico final on December 30th.