Atlas de Guadalajara seeks to be champion of the Liga MX, as happened in the Apertura 2021, and continues at a steady pace. The ‘Zorros’ are in the semifinals and face Tigres, a rival that they easily surpassed at the start of the series: Julián Quiñones appeared in the epilogue to decree the partial 3-0.
The clock was about to reach 90 minutes and those led by Diego Cocca were more dangerous, with deep arrivals on counterattacks. Precisely, one of the last occasions ended in the best way, after a great defensive imbalance of the ‘Universitarios’ during the setback.
The last time any club scored more than 2 goals against these Zorros was in last season’s Liga MX Final on Dec. 9 last year when León netted three times in the first leg of the final. Atlas then blanked the Esmeraldas in the return leg to force overtime, eventually winning the trophy via a penalty kick shootout.
Tigres coach Miguel Herrera will have to come up with a plan to break down an Atlas defense that lost central defender Anderson Santamaría to injury in minute 57. The Zorros were already without midfielder Jeremy Márquez who was serving a red-card suspension but still held up quite well against the potent Tigres attack.
For now, Atlas has a good advantage at home and is approaching the Liga MX grand final, but will have to confirm its superiority next Saturday, May 21, when it visits Tigres at the Universitario Stadium (8:00 pm Peruvian time and Mexican).
Atlas coach Diego Cocca won’t change much. He’ll likely pull Reyes back into central defense if Santamaría is ruled out (he replaced the injured Santamaría in both games against the Chivas) and will plug the precocious Márquez back into midfield alongside skipper Aldo Rocha.
Zorros fans likely won’t exhale until the powerful Tigres have been subdued once and for all, but as this Atlas defense has conceded just 17 goals in 20 matches this season, a return to the Liga MX Final would certainly appear to be a good bet.
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