The Tijuana Xolos played their sixth game in the Liga MX 2018 Apertura on Wednesday, Aug. 22, against Santos Laguna at the Estadio Caliente. The clash was set to be a tough encounter for the Aztec Canines and it did prove to be a very complicated duel.
The first half of the match was very dull as it ended scoreless and neither team seemed to take risks going forward.
This changed drastically in the second half as the visitors scored just two minutes into it to get a 1-0 lead in the 47th minute. The goal came off a long-range strike by Brian Lozano that managed to beat Gibran Lajud. The Xolos’ attack was stagnant, and Diego Cocca noticed this as he brought on Fabian Castillo to replace Ignacio Rivero in the 52nd minute. This change worked wonders as Club Tijuana immediately looked more dangerous offensively and managed to score in the 68th minute.
The scoring play started with a cross by Castillo and ended with Diego Gonzalez scoring off a deflected shot by Erick Torres. Diego Cocca continued to attack and brought on Eryc Castillo for Juan Martin Lucero to generate even more creativity going forward. This worked perfectly as the Border City Dogs continuously attacked with the trident of Eryc Castillo, Fabian Castillo, and Miller Bolanos. Luis Chavez replaced Diego Gonzalez in the 80th minute to generate even more offensive flair.
This resulted in the second goal for Xolos in the 86th minute as Eryc Castillo released a potent shot from inside of the box that found the back of the net. The Xoloitzcuintles had the three pointes secured, but failed miserably in the final moments of the game to retain their lead. Julio Furch scored off a header in the 90th minute and stole the victory from the home team at the Mictlan. It was the second consecutive home game in which the Xolos gave up a lead very late on.
The draw felt like a loss for the Xolos’ fans and the Border City Dogs, who were already ready to enjoy their second win of the season. Instead, Furch came in like a bandit and swiped two very valuable points away from Club Tijuana. The Xolos are now winless in their last five league games and are now sitting in 14th place with just six points from six games.
— Xolos (@Xolos) August 23, 2018
Xolos Lineup: Gibran Lajud, Omar Mendoza, Juan Carlos Valenzuela, Gustavo Canto, Luis Fuentes, Ignacio Rivero (52’ Fabian Castillo), Diego Rodriguez, Diego Gonzalez (80’ Luis Chavez), Miller Bolanos, Erick Torres, Juan Martin Lucero (69’ Eryc Castillo)
Main Talking Point: Promising Attack
Despite the result not being ideal, Xolos’ fans should be very excited after what was seen on the synthetic turf at the Estadio Caliente. The Xolos’ offense had been struggling all season long, but it now seems that Diego Cocca has found a formula to succeed. When Erick Torres, Miller Bolanos, Fabian Castilo, and Eryc Castillo were all playing together, it was the best the offense has looked all season. The creativity and flair of Bolanos with Eryc and Fabian Castillo is exciting and can be very dangerous going forward for any backline in the league.