Club América have won their first home game 2-0 against Querétaro. While they did look a bit rusty, they were able to get the job done after getting their starters that sat out the first game back. The Águilas hope to go nine for nine points next week as they travel to the border to face Juárez while Querétaro will travel to Monterrey to face Rayados.
The Águilas had their first chance of the game three minutes in as Julian Quiñones passed the ball off to Alejandro Zendejas who attempted to get a shot off, but it was blocked out for a corner that Gallos were able to clear from danger immediately. Two minutes later and the home team had another opportunity on goal, as Quiñones took his first shot of the game that was easy for goalkeeper Guillermo Allison to handle. A minute later, and it was Quiñones again finding Zendejas who tried to get a better angle instead of just shooting the ball and the Gallos defense were able to clear for a corner.
Querétaro had their first chance of the night seven minutes in, but Sebastian Cáceres was there to put a stop to it. A few minutes later, and the Águilas got another chance as Kevin Alvarez sent a ball into the box that Diego Valdés got a head on but, wasn’t able to turn his head in the right direction. Soon after, Gallos were in a similar position as they made their way into the box, but no player could get their head on the ball.
It wasn’t until the 28th minute when América had their most dangerous shot in the game when Luis Fuentes passed the ball to Quiñones who couldn’t control it, and his shot went over the crossbar. The ball no doubt would’ve gone in if he could’ve controlled it a bit. Quiñones had many more chances at goal throughout the match, but none of them went into the back of the net. It was obvious he was rusty after the extra week off, but he wasn’t the only one. Henry Martin couldn’t find the back of the net or create danger either in the first half.
To start the second half, head coach André Jardine made changes to hopefully spark a goal as América looked flat in the first half. He brought on Richard Sánchez for Cáceres and ‘Chichote’ Calderón for Luis Fuentes. It looked as if Jardine had opted for a 3-back. América had their first chance in the half just a minute in as Henry Martin made his way into the box, but instead of shooting, opted to keep the ball which gave Querétaro defenders enough time to get it away from him. The visitors got their first chance of the half when Pablo Barrera was fouled outside of the Águilas’ final third. The free kick led to nothing as América cleared the ball far from their area. A few minutes later, Zendejas had his first chance of the half as he made his way into the visitors’ final third, but his shot went out for a corner. In the subsequent corner, Igor Lichnovsky got his head on the ball, but it went just wide. It wasn’t until the 61st minute when the deadlock was finally broken.
Richard Sánchez gotthe ball and made his way up the field. No Querétaro players made the attempt to stop him. He took advantage of the space he was given and took a shot towards goal as the ball hit the crossbar and went just over the line, hitting the top part of the net. Up to this point, Gallos had been playing well as they were able to keep the Águilas off the scoresheet. The one mistake cost them a goal and now they had to rush to at least draw the game because once the Águilas score a goal, there’s a big chance the goals will just keep coming.
Zendejas had a chance to double the lead as he made his way into the box, but instead of taking a shot, he tried to find a better angle and that gave the Gallos time to disarm him. Few minutes later and the visitors had their own chance to equalize the game as Pablo Ortíz sent the ball into the area, but none of his teammates were able to get their heads on the ball. By the 80th minute, Jardine once again switched up his game plan as he went back to a four-back as the game was winding down. It was then four minutes after this change that the second and final goal came.
Álvaro Fidalgo took the ball into Querétaro’s final third which caused defenders and goalkeeper Allison to make their way out. This left Julián Quiñones open to receive the ball from Fidalgo and push it into the back of the net to make the Azteca erupt and put the final nail in the coffin. As the game was winding down, Jardine subbed in Brian Rodríguez who made his first appearance since suffering a season-ending injury last season when they faced Monterrey in week 14. There have been rumors Rodríguez might leave Coapa, but whether or not those rumors are true, it was great to see him make his way back from injury at the end of the game as América wrapped up a rusty win at home.
Club América: Malagón; Fuentes, Lichnovsky, Cáceres, Álvarez; Fidalgo, Dos Santos, Quiñones, Valdés, Zendejas; Martín
Querétaro: Allison; Ortíz, Barbieri, Gularte, Mendoza; Gómez, Lértora, Escamilla, Barrera; Batista, Cordero