Chivas of Guadalajara and Monarcas Morelia played in the final of the Clausura 2017 Copa Corona MX this Wednesday. The ‘rojiblancos’ came out on top and this was a familiar scene to Morelia’s 37-year-old fullback, Carlos Adrian Morales.
“Carlitos” has had a long and illustrious career dating back to 1998, seven teams, 15 finals, a career filled with glory and disappointment. Morales started his extensive career back in 1998 with the team of his heart, Monarcas Morelia. It was not long before the man from Michoacán played his first final, coming in the Invierno 2000 competition. ‘La Monarquia’ defeated Toluca in penalties to get its first and only Liga MX title.
This was the first of the 15 finals in the career of Carlos Adrian Morales and it sprung a domino effect of finals that seemingly came year after year. The younger Morales brother won his second championship with Pachuca in the Invierno 2001 competition. At this point, Morales had not tasted defeat in a professional final, all he had seen was glory at 21 years of age.
That quickly changed in the next two years as Monarcas Morelia saw success reaching Liga MX finals in the Apertura 2002 and Clausura 2003 competitions. Unfortunately, ‘la monarquia’ lost both finals and these became the first two of seven lost finals in Morales’ career. “Carlitos” was not part of any finals in 2004, but from 2005-2006, Morales participated in three. The fullback won two InterLiga titles with Tigres UANL in 2005 and 2006, then with Toluca in the Apertura 2006, Morales lost his third final. Carlos lost to Chivas and his brother, Ramon Morales falling in heart-breaking fashion at the Estadio Nemesio Diez. The former Mexican national team player did see the glory with the ‘diablos’ as he was part of the Apertura 2008 team that defeated Cruz Azul.
After Toluca, Morales had a short spell with Estudiantes Tecos, before joining the team that has brought him the most pain, Santos Laguna. Carlos Adrian joined Santos in 2010 in the middle of a dynasty for the ‘guerreros’. The Mexican defender, lost three finals with Santos Laguna in the Bicentenario 2010, Apertura 2010 and Apertura 2011 before finally winning a championship. The lone championship for “Carlitos” at his spell with the celestial warriors came in the Clausura 2012 tournament defeating rivals, Monterrey.
After his run with Santos Laguna, Morales returned home, joining Monarcas Morelia in 2012. In his second spell with the Monarchs, the younger Morales brother has had ups and downs being in an intense relegation race and being part of now three finals. The two finals that the fullback did with ‘la monarquia’ came in the Apertura 2013 edition of the Copa MX and the 2014 Supercopa MX.
The final that was lost came this Wednesday against Chivas in the Clausura 2017 edition of the Copa MX. The loss was a heartbreaking one for Morelia and Morales as the team had done everything possible to win with an alternate squad. But Monarcas Morelia fell short collapsing in the penalty shootout missing three penalties stopped by Chivas’, Miguel Jimenez. “Carlitos” did not shoot a penalty but played the entire 90 minutes leaving his soul on the pitch in his 15th and possibly last final in Mexican soccer. Carlos Adrian Morales has seen the glory winning eight titles but has now also suffered seven times, two of those seven times coming against Chivas of Guadalajara.