The New Champion of Mexican Soccer

The Estadio Azteca was the stage for the gripping final match of the Apertura 2023. The game saw the Águilas del América take on the current champions of the Liga MX in front of their fervent fans as they sought to claim their fourteenth title. However, it was not going to be an easy task against such a formidable opponent.

As the first half concluded, both teams made changes to their line-ups. After the initial 90 minutes of play, an additional 9 minutes of extra time were added. Despite this, the match ended without a winner, so América and Tigres had to go into extra time. Tigres found themselves with two fewer players on the field.

It was Julián Quiñones who broke the deadlock for América with a goal in the early minutes of the first half of extra time, altering the course of the game. It didn’t take long for the team to net a second goal, and in the final moments of the match, a third was scored. Nuevo León’s team failed to recover during the extra time, ultimately leading to América being crowned as the winner of the Liga MX on this Sunday with an overall score of 4-1.

The first half of the final between América and Tigres ended with the score level at 0-0. Julián Quiñones had the clearest opportunity of the match but failed to convert it. The initial half was extended by three minutes of extra time, during which América had a chance to take advantage of a free kick that could have reached Tigres’ area.

In the early stages of the match, Rafael Carioca received a yellow card for a foul on Henry Martín. América was saved from conceding a goal by Malagón’s crucial save when Gignac attempted a header. Julián Quiñones committed a foul on Lainez near América’s area, resulting in Diego Reyes being cautioned for a foul on Henry. Nahuel Guzmán saved Tigres from a powerful shot by Diego Valdés, which was brilliantly assisted by Quiñones.

América set out to end their title drought, having tried different strategies to secure their 14th league crown over the past five years. The opportunity presented itself when they faced the reigning champions, Tigres, in the first leg of the Mexican Apertura tournament.

The history between América and Tigres goes way back. The first encounter of the final fixture ended in a draw as the two dominant teams of Mexican football battled it out to determine the champion of the Apertura tournament. América initially took the lead through a goal by Henry Martín, but a defensive lapse from a corner kick allowed Tigres to equalize with a header from Ozziel Herrera.

Both América and Tigres faced a challenge in which the ultimate victor would be determined by the aggregate score or a penalty shootout if the match remained level after 120 minutes.

Speaking ahead of the final, the Brazilian coach of América, André Jardine, emphasized his team’s aspirations. “The most important thing is to deserve it, and for me our team deserved better luck,” he said. “We set ourselves a big goal from day one and Sunday will be the time to pursue what we set out from the start.” Jardine, in his first tournament with América, has guided the team to their first final since the Apertura 2019, seeking their first title since the Apertura 2018. If they achieve this goal, the azulcremas will reach 14 league titles, pulling two clear of Chivas, the second most decorated team in the country.