Tijuana Xolos Liga MX CL 18 Week 6 Recap: Lajud Breaks Record as Tijuana Breaks Against Queretaro

Credit: Liga MX

 

The Tijuana Xolos played their sixth game of the Liga MX Clausura 2018 on Friday at the Estadio Caliente against Queretaro.

The atmosphere at the Estadio Caliente was vibrant as the Xolos’ fans paid tribute to Pablo Aguilar before the match, and there were more Queretaro fans than expected that added to the spectacle.

 

The Border City Dogs were the clear favorites heading into the encounter as the team was in much better form than its opponent. Club Tijuana had been undefeated before this match with three draws and two wins and had not conceded a goal yet.

That all changed on this chilly Friday night in Tijuana as the Aztec Canines fell 2-0 and inclusively finished the match with nine players on the pitch.

Turning Point: Penalty & Red Card

The match had been fairly even up until the turning point of the encounter in the 66th minute. A harsh foul inside of the box by Pablo Aguilar on Brazilian striker Everaldo Stum gave Aguilar his second yellow of the game and awarded Queretaro a penalty. Chilean forward Edson Puch stepped up to take the decisive shot and gave his team a 1-0 lead. The border city team really lost control after the red card and the goal, and it was Queretaro’s game to win after that. Edson Puch sealed the game with a goal in the 71st minute and Miller Bolanos received a direct red card shortly after because of a kick on Miguel Samudio. The team lost complete control as Alejandro Guido even carelessly shot the ball at one of Queretaro’s players instead of trying to construct a play going forward in the 77th minute. Miller Bolanos will not really be missed for the next game against Pachuca, but Pablo Aguilar is a huge blow to the team.

Man of The Match: Edson Puch

It had been a while since Edson Puch had a big game like the one he had this Friday night. The Chilean forward had been plagued by injuries last season with Pachuca and is trying to get back on track with Queretaro this season. This was his first impactful performance with Los Gallos as he paved the way to their victory with two goals. There is no doubt Puch has never lacked talent as he can prove to be one of the better players in the Liga MX on his day and it will be interesting to see if he can keep it up this season.

Main Talking Point: “Otra Copa Capitan”?

Gibran Lajud did break the record for the most minutes without allowing a goal to start a Liga MX season since 1996, but it was overshadowed by the woeful performance by Club Tijuana. The Xolos’ ultras group, known as “La Masakr3”, lifted up a banner that read “Otra Copa Capitan” or “Another Championship Captain” referring to Pablo Aguilar before the match. The Xolos were riding high heading into the match and ended up with a massive breakdown. It was ironic that the man who the fans dedicated a banner to ended up being the villain of the night. This game proved that Club Tijuana is not a shoe-in for the playoffs and that the team is still trying to find its form, and has been since the departure of Miguel Herrera. The Xolos had needed luck this season to achieve certain results, and luck failed them in this game. There is enough quality on this roster to reach the playoffs by the end of the regular season, but the performance that was seen this Friday night certainly raises some doubts and brings up some questions.

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Francisco Velasco
Francisco, 21, Chula Vista area, Journalism student at Southwestern College. I have been a Padres fan all my life, did most of the series previews and recaps in the Padres' 2016 season for EVT. Now I focus more on the Tijuana Xolos soccer team, get press passes for every home game and write consistently about the team for EVT.

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