Chivas was able to get their first win and first goals under new coach Michel Leaño with a 4-1 friendly win over Leon in San Jose. The match, which had been postponed because of an incident in a previous match, was played without a fans in attendance. Chivas was nonetheless able to dominate and get a comfortable win over a Leon side that looked dispirited from the start. Chivas had failed to score in three Liga MX games under Leaño as well as in a friendly against El Salvador side F.A.S. on Wednesday which ended 0-0 but came out big on Saturday. Both teams will now return to Mexico where they will have a tough match on Sunday, with Chivas at home against Toluca while Leon are away against Monterrey.
The first half started with both teams coming out with starting lineups as close to their regular team as they could without national team players. The first minutes were very even with both teams trading possession. After a nice run by Fernando Beltran, he found Cesar Huerta but his shot was easily saved by Leon’s goalkeeper Ivan Vasquez. Later it was Angel Zaldivar who got off a left footed shot that went wide. Chivas wasted a great opportunity when Huerta got off a right footed shot that hit the post. The ball bounced right to Zaldivar, who went past Vasquez and sent a cross to a wide open Jesus Ricardo Angulo. Instead of volleying it, Angulo lowered the ball to his left which caused him to waste precious seconds, allowing the goalkeeper to return and Angulo’s left footed shot was deflected out for a corner kick. A couple of minutes later, Chivas would make a good combination play between Angulo and Zaldivar. Angulo got pulled back by a Leon defender but the ball was left for Angel Zaldivar to get off a left footed shot that deflected off of a Leon defender and past Vasquez for the 1-0 lead. The play most likely would have been a penalty kick had it not gone in but it was called a goal, the first by Chivas under new coach Michel Leaño. Leon then wasted a great opportunity after Miguel Ponce missed on a ball and Elias Hernandez got a wide open left footed shot, but it went well wide. Chivas also wasted a great opportunity when after a foul wasn’t called, they had a four-on-two but Angulo couldn’t control the ball and gave it into the hands of Vasquez in a terrible miss. Minutes later he would fix his mistake by going on a one-on-one and then getting past Vasquez, shooting into the open net with a left footed shot just as Leon defenders were arriving for a 2-0 lead. The rest of the minutes were even as the half was all Chivas, who took their deserved lead.
The second half started with Leon trying to get back into the game and Chivas hoping to continue their good form straight from the first half. Leon got back soon into the half when on a free kick, Santiago Colombatto’s cross found a wide open Stiven Bareiro, who got a right footed shot past goalkeeper Raul Gudiño to get one back for Leon and make it 2-1. Leon subbed out Ivan Rodriguez for Victor Davila in a more offensive move. A minute later Carlos Cisneros took a free kick and his right footed shot was deflected by the wall, going past Vasquez for the 3-1. Later, Angulo got the ball in the area and got off a left footed shot that was saved by Vasquez. Leon then subbed out Elias Hernandez and Andres Mosquera for Yael Uribe and Gil Buron. Later Chivas subbed out Angel Zaldivar, Jesus Molina, and Luis Olvias for Oribe Peralta, Alan Torres, and Antonio Briseño. Chivas came close again when a cross into the area was deflected by Vasquez. Had he not done so, Peralta would have had a wide open net to shoot at. After a play in the area, Angulo got off a shot from close range that forced Vasquez to make a great save. Chivas then subbed out Gilberto Sepulveda and Cesar Huerta for Hiram Mier and Cristian Calderon. Later Leon subbed out Luis Montes and Omar Fernandez for Pablo Rangel and Jessy Zamudio. The game continued with Chivas having more possession, as Leon looked to have given up. Chivas subbed out Jesus Ricardo Angulo, Fernando Beltran, and Miguel Ponce for Ronaldo Cisneros, Dylan Guajardo, and Alejandro Mayorga. Minutes later, Ronaldo Cisneros got past his defender and his cross into the area found Alan Torres, who headed the ball past Vasquez for the 4-1 score. Chivas had another chance off of a free kick when Calderon’s left footed shot went just wide. It would be the last play, as the ref blew the whistle immediately after the 90th minute, giving Chivas a very strong friendly win.
It was just a friendly, but Chivas ends their US tour during the FIFA date in great form. In a friendly that had been postponed because of fan violence at PayPal Park in Friday’s friendly between the San Jose Earthquakes and Cruz Azul. It was later determined that the match would be played without fans. Chivas rose to the occasion and dominated a match against a Leon side that never got into the match. Although both teams came with strong lineups, Chivas was far and away the better team. Still it was only a friendly, and Chivas had a greater need as Leon is doing better in Liga MX, but not by much. After winning the Leagues Cup, Leon has struggled somewhat in Liga MX while Chivas had yet to score in three Liga MX matches and the friendly with F.A.S. Now they will return for a tough match at home against a Toluca side that sits in third place, while Leon will have to travel to Monterrey and face a Rayados team that sits in fourth.