• Monday Nov 28, 2016

    Road to SCCL: Liga MX Quarterfinals, 2nd leg update

    Andre-Pierre Gignac (center) celebrates after scoring on of his three goals in Tigres win over visiting Pumas in a Liga MX Apertura quarterfinal, second-leg match on November 26, 2016, in San Nicolas de los Garza. (Photo: Andrea Jimenez/Straffon Images)

    MEXICO CITY – The top two seeds were eliminated from the 2016 Liga MX Apertura playoffs as quarterfinal, second-leg play concluded Sunday with Club America, Leon, Necaxa and Tigres progressing.

    In the biggest surprise, first-place Club Tijuana was sent packing despite a 3-2 win over visiting Leon, ultimately falling 5-3 on aggregate.

    The top individual performance was submitted by Andre-Pierre Gignac, who scored three goals as Tigres topped fellow 2016/17 Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinalist Pumas, 5-0.

    Here are the semifinal pairings:

    Tigres v Leon
    Club America v Necaxa

    Dates and times four each of the four semifinal encounters are expected to be announced Monday.

    CONCACAF.com recaps the action:

    2016 LIGA MX APERTURA
    Quarterfinals, Second Leg

    November 26, 2016
    Estadio Universitario – San Nicolas de los Garza
    (3) Tigres 5, (6) Pumas 0
    Tigres advances to semifinals (agg: 7-2)

    Andre-Pierre Gignac opened the scoring with the first of his three goals in the fourth minute and Tigres outdistanced Pumas, 5-0. The France made it 1-0, netting from the edge of the six-yard box off a splendid pass by Javier Aquino.

    An own-goal by Dario Veron made it 2-0 in the 26th minute and the scored remained that way until the 25th minute, when Gignac brilliantly collected Jurgen Damm’s right-sided cross with his chest and let the ball bounce, before firing a right-footed shot that hit the crossbar and left post prior to crossing the line.

    Four minutes later, fellow Frenchman Andy Delort fed Gignac for a 16-yard finish to make it 4-0.

    Delort completed the scoreline with a minute remaining in normal time thanks to another precise pass by Damm from the right.

    Notes:
    - Tigres won at home in Liga MX play for the first time in five games (1W-2D-2L) … last home win came v Puebla, 2-1, on September 17, 2016
    - Five-goal margin of victory was Tigres’ largest of 2016 Liga MX Apertura … defeated host Club America, 3-0, on July 30, 2016
    - Pumas shutout for first time in 12 Liga MX games
    - Most goals conceded by Pumas in a 2016 Liga MX game … previous high was three on four regular-season occasions (0-3 away loss v Pachuca, 5-3 home win v Monterrey, 1-3 away loss v Santos, 1-3 home loss v Tigres) 

    Estadio Caliente – Tijuana
    (1) Club Tijuana 3, (8) Leon 2
    Leon advances to semifinals (agg: 5-3)

    Despite playing with 10 men following Vitor Gomes’ ejection in the 17th minute, Club Tijuana posted a 3-2 win over Leon. The visitor, however, advanced 5-3 on aggregate thanks to a pair of late goals.

    Down 3-0 on the night, but level at 3-3 on total goals, Leon’s Mauro Boselli headed home in the 81st minute for what proved to be the series winner. Luis Montes added an insurance tally with six minutes left in normal time as Los Panzas Verdes remained in contention for their first Liga MX title since the 2014 Clausura.

    After head coach Miguel Herrera was dismissed in the fifth minute, Club Tijuana went on the offensive, netting all three of its goals before halftime. Dayro Moreno (13’ pen), Yasser Corona (41’) and Guido Rodriguez (43’) each got on the scoresheet.

    Notes:
    - Club Tijuana improved to 8W-0D-1L in 2016 Liga MX Apertura home games
    - Club Tijuana had conceded only two goals in its previous eight 2016 Liga MX Apertura home games
    - Leon’s 11-match Liga MX unbeaten streak snapped (7W-4D-1L)
    - Leon has scored two or more goals in seven of its last eight Liga MX matches

    November 27, 2016
    Estadio Chivas – Zapopan
    (4) Guadalajara 0, (5) Club America 1
    Club America advances to semifinals (agg: 2-1)

    As he has done so often for club and country, Oribe Peralta struck for the only to give Club America a 1-0 win over host Guadalajara. The result gave the 12-time champion Aguilas a 2-1 aggregate triumph.

    In the 55th minute, the 32-year-old came from a left-post position to head home from nine-yards out off Carlos Darwin Quintero’s right-sided corner kick.

    Notes:
    - Club America is unbeaten in 10 straight 2016 Liga MX Apertura games (4W-6D-0L) … previous three outings ended in a draw
    - Club America posted its first shutout in the 2016 Liga MX Apertura play since defeating visiting Chiapas, 3-0, on July 16, 2016, on the opening day of the season
    - Guadalajara’s previous three Liga MX Apertura matches ended in 1-1 draws
    - Guadalajara hasn’t won a Liga MX title since the 2006 Apertura

    Estadio Hidalgo – Pachuca
    (2) Pachuca 0, (7) Necaxa 0
    Necaxa advances to semifinals (agg: 2-1)

    Pachuca’s bid to repeat as Liga MX champion ended in a 0-0 draw with visiting Necaxa, which advanced to the semifinals 2-1 on aggregate.

    Six Necaxa players were issued cards, including a straight red to Claudio Riaño for an awkward challenge on Hirving Lozano with slightly more than two minutes left in normal time.

    Necaxa, which earned promotion to Liga MX for this season, hasn’t captured a top-flight title since the 1998 Invierno.

    Notes:
    - Pachuca finished the 2016 Liga MX Apertura unbeaten at home (6W-4D-0L)
    - Pachuca shutout for the first time in 11 Liga MX matches
    - Necaxa shutout for the first time in 10 Liga MX matches
    - Necaxa is unbeaten in its last four Liga MX matches (2W-2D-0L)

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