Chivas remained on top of the league tables after they got a 1-1 tie away to FC Juárez. For the first time in the Apertura 2023, they didn’t come out with a win, but the draw was good enough to see them continue in first. El Rebaño now return home to face Tijuana while FC Juárez will remain at home to face Pumas. Both matches take place today.
The match started with Chivas making some changes, such as benching Alan Mozo for Jesus Sanchez and having Roberto Alvarado’s first start, who had been with Mexico’s NT during their Gold Cup winning campaign. A great cross from Juárez could have been dangerous but Gilberto Sepulveda would make a great clearance. After a great combination play, Alvarado would get to the area and fire off a left-footed shot that was miraculously saved by Talavera. Unfortunately for him, the rebound was left in the path of Alexis Vega, whose right-footed shot into the empty net gave Chivas the 1-0 lead. A great cross into the area was headed from close range by Amaury Escoto, but Chivas goalkeeper Miguel Jimenez was well placed to make the save. The visitors were controlling possession although since having the lead, they weren’t as offensive as they’d been prior to. The halftime whistle blew and Chivas took their deserved lead to the dressing room.
The second half started with no changes, a surprise from a Juárez team that looked weak in the first 45. Off a free kick, Sebastian Saucedo got off an incredible right-footed shot that hit the post and then bounced Jimenez’s hand, preventing the ball from going in. Both teams then began with their subs. Padilla would make a great move in the area before losing the ball in what could have been a great chance. The home side gained more possession, but overall the match didn’t improve much as both teams cancelled each other out.
Chivas had a great counter, but Alvarado’s pass went behind Marin and the chance was wasted. Off another counter, Aitor Garcia fired a shot that Jimenez blocked, but left in the path of Mayorga who made a bad clearance, but Jimenez was able to get to it just before Urzi did. A minute later, Hurtado got into the area and fell after a slide by Orozco, but the ref gave a PK to Juárez. Replays showed it was a doubtful call, but the ref didn’t change the decision. Aviles Hurtado stepped up to take the PK and with a well placed right-footed shot, scored the equalizer. Chivas had one last chance with the ball bouncing around the area, but the shot ultimately went wide. In the end, there was no clear opportunity after the PK for either team and the match ended at 1 all.
It wasn’t the most exciting match, but Chivas were able to take home a point that maintains their first place lead in the standings. It wasn’t their greatest performance, but Chivas might have slightly deserved better against an FC Juárez team that struggled offensively. Both teams remain undefeated, although they’ll face tough matches for their mid-week games. FC Juárez will stay at home where they face a Pumas side that is also undefeated, but have had trouble, especially on offense. Chivas should have an easier match against Tijuana and should be favored, although Xolos at times have had some good performances against Chivas in the past.