Most people read 0-0 scorelines and think damn, snooooozefest. But last night’s Liguilla matchup between Chivas and Club América at the Estadio Chivas was anything but boring; the Clásico had me up nervously biting my nails and hanging onto every Carlos Salcido long shot until well past 12:00 a.m. EST.
We started off the evening with plenty of excitement and enlivened Twitter fandom…
…And anticipated the cards that were to come from the eight-second mark on.
Chivas? Scared? Never!
The home squad had the majority of the attacking ??? during the first half, with Isaác “Conejito” Brizuela looking bright and wrecking ball-esque down the wing:
But a staunch Águila defense kept the game tied going into halftime. 0-0.
The intensity was taken to the next level in the second, as was put on prominent display in Rubens Sambueza’s second-yellow-turned-red escapades. 60th minute: América down to 10 men.
In all honesty, Chivas choked; despite being a man up, the rebaño sagrado couldn’t get its shit together. An Omar Bravo substitution didn’t do it any favors.
A flurry of fouls and crazy cards came in the final half hour, with Darwin Quintero and Jair Pereira picking up yellows before a straight red for Ángel Zaldívar in the 82nd. Safe to say that we were all a little perplexed. *ALL OF THE CARDS!*
Two things are for certain upon the conclusion of the Clásico:
1. Refereeing came into play. The actions of the árbitros were amusing and – at points – downright confusing. That takedown by William da Silva on Jesús “Chapo” Sánchez? WTF? Yeah.
2. Rodolfo Cota was the figura del partido. It’s no wonder he recently renewed his contract; Cota saved me (and many others) from death by Sambu slides and Águila-induced heart attacks.
Nacho Ambriz will like his side’s chances against Matias Almeyda’s crew at home on Sunday, but anything is possible. All to play for.