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Xolos edge out Monarcas at the border

Javier Gandolfi gave Xolos three important home points.
Javier Gandolfi gave Xolos three important home points.

Club Tijuana managed a 1-0 win over Monarcas Morelia at the Caliente Stadium in the second game Friday night to kick of week 4 of the Clausura 2014 of La Liga MX. The Aztec dogs continue on a good pace at home as they move into another tournament where they look to make “Fortress Caliente” weigh on their opponents.

The game was highly disputed in the midfield against a Michoacán team that planted themselves in the back waiting for a counterstrike. This gave the home side the advantage and allowed them to control the ball as they pleased.

Within minutes of the initial whistle the rojinegros were knocking on goalkeeper Carlos Rodriguez’ net. In fact, Tijuana had more runs on goal, but was not able to make Rodriguez work too hard in the first 45 minutes of play. After a couple of high shots that went over the crossbar, Monarcas went into the break with 0-0 that seemed to favor them in the long run.

The second half saw the local squad again take the initiative in an attempt to take control of the pitch. The game got intense in the midfield with both teams racking up yellow cards as they tried to stop the attacks from the other team in an attempt to keep them from taking an advantage.

The second half saw a Monarcas team that had fallen back to defend the 0-0. The draw would earn them an away point, something that did not benefit Xolos. The constant attack from the home-side forced a set-piece in the 61st minute. Ecuadorian Fidel Martinez took the shot and connected with Argentine Javier Gandolfi who lost his marker and headed the ball past Rodriguez for the 1-0.

Immediately the visiting squad moved their lines forward, but gave up spaces allowing Xolos to make more dangerous plays that looked like the home side would increase their lead. However, after a few minutes Monarcas fell back once more and waited for the counterstrike to try and get the drawing goal, something that would never come for the “purepechas.”

“The important thing was to get the three points,” Juan de Dios Hernandez, who had an opportunity to start the game, said. “They are a complicated rival. Thank God we were able to get the victory. We were able to get three points at home which is the most important.”

Xolos win their second home game of the season and now sum up 7 points in league play. In the process, Xolos win their first ever game against the Monarchy. While not the best record, it keeps the Aztec dogs in contention. Xoloitzcuintles will travel to Mexico City to take on Pumas UNAM in their next game. Monarcas will host Santa Fe of Colombia in Copa Libertadores action before facing current La Liga MX champion Leon FC at the Morelos Stadium.

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