America 1-3 Leon Final Highlights – Leon is the new Liga MX Champion
Hector Torres | On 15, Dec 2013
The America vs Leon second leg final held at the Estadio Azteca ended in a 3-1 away victory for Leon, putting the aggregate score at 5-1, and thus awarding the championship to Leon. Club America had many more scoring opportunities than Leon in the second leg, but missed too many times, while Leon scored when given the chance.
Miguel Herrera opted for one key change in his starting line-up, and it just might have cost him the championship. Herrera decided to let Mina play as a starting forward instead of Luis Gabriel Rey, who had been the starter through most of the season. Mina went on to have an awful game, missing half a dozen scoring opportunities. Herrera would eventually sub out Mina in the 67th minute for Rey; the fans at the Azteca booed Mina as he walked off the pitch.
Matosas had Leon fall back and counterattack, knowing that America would be forced to attack, thus taking advantage of the spaces America offered in the back. Leon would score early in the first half, with a 12th minute goal from Boselli. For the rest of the first half, Club America would maintain possession of the ball, and generate many scoring opportunities. However, America was only able to score until the 41st minute, when a Sambueza shot took a deflection and went into the net. The first half would end 1-1.
In the second half, it appeared America could potentially come back, at that point, America only needed to score two more goals. However, Gonzalez would destroy the hopes of Club America fans with a goal in 51st minute, which came from a header off a corner kick.
America’s hope of pulling off a miracle decreased when Maza was red carded in the 54th minute due to a foul that stopped a scoring opportunity for Leon. Down to 10 men, America continued to attack, leaving huge gaps in the back. Leon would exploit this by scoring the 3-1 goal in the 72nd minute. Hernandez scored off a great counterattack, and sealed the championship for Leon.
The match ended 3-1 in favor of Leon, who wins its first Liga MX title in over 20 years. Although the 5-1 aggregate score makes it seem Leon was clearly superior, I believe this championship series could have ended in favor of either team. America and Leon both created several scoring opportunities, but it was Leon who took advantage of these.
Who knows, if Luis Gabriel Rey had started instead of Mina, it could have been America celebrating a bicampeonato today.