FC Juarez Squanders Win in Season Opener with Pachuca
What would have been an amazing start to the 2021 Clausura season for FC Juarez ended with an overwhelming sense of “blah”. The Bravos tied with Pachuca by the score of 1-1 in that state of Hidalgo on Monday night in a match that saw Bravos fail to obtain the 3 points awarded for the win after allowing the game equalizer in the final moments of the match.
When you tie in soccer sometimes you feel lucky to have obtained the single point that you are awarded with for the draw, other times you feel like if you did not get a point, but you lost 2. Safe to say, that the latter was the case for FC Juarez in their season opener last night.
The team from the Borderland was moments away from getting a victory, on the road, in a match where they played with one man down since the 20th minute. As has been this franchise’s M.O. since they moved up to Mexico’s premiere division, they paid a heavy price for a momentary lapse of concentration, a moment that would deny them the victory.
FC Juarez got off to a quick start as they created an immediate threat on goal in the first 60 seconds of the match. Both teams would work to feel each other out and settle in the match when in the 20th minute Marco Fabian would be overly aggressive in a meaningless midfield sliding tackle. The contact would be too much for referee Omar Gonzalez who would send Fabian off with a direct red card after the tackle has reviewed on the VAR (Video Assistant Referee/Instant Replay).
Pachuca would immediate take advantage and take complete control of the match, dominating ball possession. Still the Bravos would take advantage of one of the few offensive opportunities created when on a free kick Jefferson Intriago would find Victor Velasquez who would score off of a header in the 41st minute of the match.
Pachuca would have a man sent off in the 56th minute to even things out when Oscar Fabian Murrilo would be left with no choice but to break up a fast break that would give him his second yellow card, leading to the red card.
The match would become evenly contested by both sides as ball possession would be evenly divided.
It would look like if the Bravos would get the win, against all odds, as the referee awarded 4 minutes of stoppage time. Well as the clock struck the 94th minute Pachuca would send its final cross into the box in complete desperation. The cross would find Mauro Daniel Quiroga who would get the equalizer off of a header.
The final whistle would blow moments later.
After the match, Luis Fernando Tena, who obtain his first point as the Bravos new head coach commented the following regarding his team’s performance, “We’re left with a bitter taste in our mouth with final score, but we also have to acknowledge the great effort, determination and solidarity that our team showed. The team showed great organization on the field of play despite playing with one man less, which lead to greater degree of compensation and physical attrition.”
The turnaround will be fast for Bravos as they will host Xolos de Tijuana at Benito Juarez Olympic Stadium on Friday night. This will leave the Bravos with only 2-3 days to prepare for their home opener depending if they train on Tuesday evening/night after they arrive from the state of Hidalgo.