Pachuca extended their home unbeaten streak to four games with a 3-1 victory against 9-man Cruz Azul. The result snaps a two-game winless streak for the Tuzos, while La Máquina has now lost two of their last three.
The game started off with an early chance for the visitors as Adrián Aldrete tested Óscar Pérez – making his first league start since November 2017 – in the 2nd minute, but it was the hosts who took the early lead.
In the 7th minute, Víctor Guzmán sent a cross into the box for José Ulloa, who out-jumped his defender to head the ball past a stranded Jesús Corona and make it 1-0 for Pachuca.
The night took a turn for the worse for Cruz Azul in the 21st minute, when José Madueña was shown a straight red card for a foul on Jorge Hernández. Then, in the 30th minute, Pachuca added to their lead. Once again Guzmán was the provider as he found Miguel Tapias, who found the back of the net to make it 2-0.
The Tuzos kept attacking and in the 42nd minute, Pablo López received a pass from Guzmán and sent his diagonal shot into the back of the net to give Pachuca the 3-0 lead.
The visitors were able to reduce the deficit just before halftime, though, as Pablo Aguilar headed home a corner kick to make it 3-1 and give Cruz Azul a foothold in the game.
La Máquina looked better in the second half and Aguilar came close to adding a second in the 54th minute with another header, while Martín Cauteruccio saw a dangerous attack stopped by a well-timed tackle by Tapias in the 77th.
Cruz Azul couldn’t find a second goal, though, and their chances of doing so were severely reduced in the 85th minute when Milton Caraglio earned a straight red card for a bad tackle on Emmanuel Gacía that left the visitors with just nine men.
Pachuca had a few chances to run up the score, including a point-blank shot in stoppage time that Corona saved, but in the end the score remained 3-1.
With the 3-1 win, Pachuca reaches 15 points while Cruz Azul still has 23.
Pachuca: Óscar Pérez, Miguel Tapias, Raúl López, Emmanuel García, Óscar Murillo, Alexis Peña, Víctor Guzmán, Erick Aguirre (Christian Giménez 72′), Jorge Hernández, Pablo López (Ángelo Sagal 63′), José Leonardo Ulloa (Sebastián Palacios 84′).
Cruz Azul: José de Jesús Corona, Pablo Aguilar, Julio César Domínguez, Adrián Aldrete, José Madueña, Javier Salas, Walter Montoya (Édgar Mendez 32′), Elías Hernández, Iván Marcone (Martín Cauteruccio 61′), Milton Caraglio, Andrés Rentería (Roberto Alvarado 45′).