An own-goal gave Pumas UNAM the lead, and a missed penalty allowed them to keep it as they earned a 1-0 victory over Chivas de Guadalajara in their Apertura opener. It wasn’t, perhaps, the prettiest victory, but it got Francisco Palencia’s tenure as coach of the universitarios off to a good start.
The first half was played at a very deliberate pace, with both teams sizing each other up. There were few chances of note, with neither Rodolfo Cota nor Alejandro Palacios having much to do in their respective goals.
The second half was a different story. Pumas made a halftime substitution, bringing on Fidel Martínez, and both teams came out attack-minded and looking to score.
In the 55th minute, Pumas took the lead. Abraham González played a long ball, looking for Eduardo Herrera, and Jair Pereira got their first. However, his attempted clearance ended up in the back of his own net, with that own-goal making it 1-0 for the universitarios.
Chivas pressed forward in search of an equalizer, and Carlos Peña tried his luck several times, only for “Pikolín” Palacios to intervene.
Then, in the 90th minute, Luis Quintana – who had entered the game just four minutes earlier – was called for a handball in the box. Pumas’ protests only resulted in a yellow card to Matías Britos, and Chivas de Guadalajara had a golden opportunity to snatch a late equalizer from the spot.
Carlos Peña stepped up to take the penalty, but Alejandro Palacios had the upper hand once again. “Pikolín” made the save and Pumas hung on for the victory.
With the 1-0 win, Pumas UNAM reaches three points while Chivas remains on zero.
Pumas: Alejandro Palacios, Marcelo Alatorre, Darío Verón, Alejandro Castro, Luis Fernando Fuentes, Pablo Barrera (Luis Quintana 86′), Javier Cortés, Abraham González, Saúl Berjón (Fidel Martínez 46′), Matías Britos, Eduardo Herrera (Kevin Escamilla 76′).
Chivas: Rodolfo Cota, Jesús Sánchez, Carlos Salcedo, Jair Pereira, Edwin Hernández (Néstor Calderón 58′), Carlos Salcido (Marco Bueno 65′), Orbelín Pineda, Isaác Brizuela (Javier López 56′), Carlos Peña, Carlos Cisneros, Ángel Zaldívar.