Atlas extended their home unbeaten streak to five games with a 1-0 victory against Pachuca. The Tuzos are now winless in six and goalless in the same span, although tonight they had the excuse of resting a number of starters with an eye towards Wednesday’s CONCACAF Champions League final.
The first half was a largely even affair, with both teams looking to strengthen their positioning in the playoff race. The visitors had the first clear chance in the 28th minute, when Hirving Lozano found Erick Aguirre in the box, but Brayan Garnica was there to clear the ball with the goalkeeper beaten.
But it was Atlas who took the lead. In the 35th minute, Garnica got into the box and sent in a cross for Matías Alustiza, whose header beat Óscar Pérez to make it 1-0.
The Rojinegros came close to adding a second in the second half, when Daniel Álvarez found himself one-on-one with the keeper, but he couldn’t find the target.
Pachuca poured the pressure on as time wore on, and the Tuzos won quite a few corner kicks and set pieces. However, they were unable to find the final touch as their youthful lineup provided enthusiasm but not quite the needed depth.
With the 1-0 win, Atlas reaches 23 points while Pachuca still has 20.
Atlas: Miguel Ángel Fraga, Leiton Jiménez, Luis Reyes, José Madueña, Jaine Barreiro, Bryan Garnica (Jahir Barraza 81′), Daniel Álvarez (Édgar Zaldívar 77′), Javier Salas, Luis Robles, Matías Alustiza, Martín Barragán (Fidel Martínez 78′).
Pachuca: Óscar Pérez, Erick Aguirre, Emmanuel García, Alexis Peña, John Stefan Medina, Jorge Hernández (Luis González 87′), Francisco Figueroa, Hirving Lozano, Roberto Alvarado (Juan José Calero 74′), Braian Rodríguez, Joaquín Esquivel (Pablo López 67′).