While last season’s Clasico Joven was a lackluster scoreless draw, this season was the complete opposite with America putting on a show and downing Cruz Azul 7 - 0 on a rainy night at Estadio Azteca. Cruz Azul had no answers for a dominant America side who moved into fourth place after a slow start to the season.
Liga MX fans didn’t get a lot of excitement in the scoreless Clasico Regio, but the Clasico Joven was nothing short as we saw goal after goal after goal. Seven goals to be exact, and all belonged to Club America. Even when America were up 2 - 0 in the 21st minute, Cruz Azul still had a chance to bounce back and continued to push, but luck was not on their side as two separate shots hit the goal post in the 30th minute. Six minutes later, Ramiro Funes Mori had to be carted off the pitch due to injury. As the half was coming to a close, it looked as if Cruz Azul were going to turn things around when they scored in the 45th minute. After checking VAR, the referee annulled the goal as he determined Rodolfo Rotondi pushed Alejandro Zendejas in the box as went up for the ball. From there, the night went from bad to worse for Cruz Azul. Rafael Baca received a yellow for a tackle on Henry Martin but was upgraded to a red card when the referee checked VAR and rightfully ejected Baca for the reckless tackle. Diego Valdes took the free kick and was able to send the ball to the back of the net to go up 3 - 0 in the first half.
The second half wasn’t any better for La Maquina. They had a few strong minutes in the beginning, but America would not let up. In the 52nd minute, Emilio Lara sent a ball into the box past two defenders who couldn’t get a touch on it, and Henry Martin was able to kick it past goalkeeper Sebastian Jurado. For the next 20 minutes, America did lose a bit of intensity but prevented any attempts made by Cruz Azul and continued to move towards the goal despite being up by four. In the 72nd minute, Alvaro Fidalgo added to the total count with his shot outside the area, and Jurado had no chance of stopping it. By the 84th minute, America had used all five subs, including Miguel Layun and Federico Viñas who combined for the sixth goal of the night. Layun sent a ball into the box and Viñas was able to head it towards the back of the net. In the last minute of the game, Layun sent in a pass to Salvador Reyes who was able to slip past a defender to score the seventh and final goal of the night.
In the last four matches, America have scored 15 goals and only conceded 1. Cruz Azul, on the other hand, have conceded 16 goals and only scored 4 in their last four matches. The last four weeks have been a nightmare for La Maquina who are only a year removed from having being the Clausura 2021 champions. It’s crazy how a year can make such a difference. Cruz Azul face Querétaro next weekend, who won their first game of the season last night against Tijuana. It will be a surprise if Diego Aguirre is still the head coach by then as many are calling for his resignation after a disastrous start to the season. America will also face Querétaro on the road on Tuesday night as their Round 16 meeting will be advanced due to the FIFA break their match was originally scheduled on.