clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

This Harold Preciado miss is one for the ages

The goal would’ve cut Rayados’ lead in half with 10+ minutes to play.

Santos Laguna v Monterrey - Torneo Clausura 2024 Liga MX Photo by Manuel Guadarrama/Getty Images

Down 0-2 to Rayados at home in yet another battle to claim the ‘Best team of the North’ title, Santos found themselves in a complicated situation. Having failed to convert on multiple good chances throughout the game which would’ve changed things drastically, their clear-cut best opportunity of the night came in the 85th minute, on the boots of their top offensive talent and goalscorer, Harold Preciado.

After taking control of the ball on the right side, Santi Muñoz sent in a cross that all 4 contestants (2 Santos, 2 Rayados) failed to deal with, allowing the ball to reach a waiting Santiago Núñez, who tried to find a teammate in the six-yard box. That pass was blocked by Brandon Vázquez (shoutout to him on the extra effort, being a striker and all).

However, the rebound off Vázquez’s block fell to Pedro Aquino who barely impacted the ball at all, allowing Matheus Doria (right beside him) to get his try on goal. His attempt was blocked heroically by Sebastián Vegas. And then came the Preciado botch. See for yourself.

If there’s one thing I will say it’s that the ball comes off Vegas directed slightly behind the Colombian striker. That obviously moves his body against the natural momentum of the play and forces him to reshuffle his feet just before making contact with the ball. That prevents him from setting up his body correctly and thus, the ball is sent way over the goal from inside the six-yard box.

All of that being said, there is NO excuse for not putting that one away. When you’re a professional striker (meaning you do this for a living), and you’re that close to goal with a practically beaten keeper, you can’t miss that. Pretty much anywhere he placed that ball through the air, it would’ve gone in. With your team needing you and the crucial position it puts you in to rescue the match at home, it’s simply unexcusable.

Not to mention, the ref tacked on 6 minutes of stoppage time, plus the 5 minutes of the original 90 that were left, meaning they would’ve had at least 11 more minutes to look for the equalizer. And with the crowd going crazy combined with Rayados feeling the heat, that absolutely could’ve happened.

Nothing is easy in pro football, but this miss has to be a top candidate for the Clausura 2024 award.