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PUMAS Blog: CONCACAF CL Game 1: San Francisco 1 - 1 Pumas

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

CONCACAF CL Game 1: San Francisco 1 - 1 Pumas

Video here.

In a complicated game played by effectively the Pumas reserve team, the UNAM team managed to gain a point away in Panama, despite playing nearly half the match with nine men. Although they took an early lead, in the end Pumas were hanging on against limited opposition who nevertheless might have stolen the victory.

Few of the university starting line-up had much first team experience, and none started in the last match against Tigres. Palencia, C.H. González and Fernando Espinoza were the most experienced players, with Alex Diego and Jehu Chiapas having had a few first team games. Patiño started in goal ahead of Alejandro Palacios, and Martín Bravo (picture) started his first game for the club after the problems of getting the necessary paperwork out of the Argentinian Federation.

Right from the start Pumas were in command of possession, and it looked as if the Panamanians would rely on pumping in crosses to their tall strikers Pérez and Zapata. Nevertheless there was a lack of cohesion and penetration from the Mexicans, not unsurprisingly since the players will not have played together in this way before.

The start was ideal for Pumas as in the 7th minute they were ahead. A free kick was taken short to Espinoza, and he skipped round one to unleash a shot which took a deflection and ended up going in off the underside of the bar. From here it should have been plain sailing with the amount of ball that the UNAM had at their disposal, but goalkeeper Odin Patiño looked nervous, and Juan Carlos Ramírez looked at sea, with González lacking the height of Palacios to deal with awkward crosses.

San Francisco hit back five minutes before half time with a predictable header which Zapata put away unmarked despite being surrounded by four Pumas defenders. And worse was to follow before the break. Bravo, in his debut game, had looked a little sluggish but vaguely promising when the assistant referee called over Joel Aguilar who was in charge, as a result of Temis Pérez writhing around on the floor. It transpired that the Panamanian had pulled Bravo's hair and he had reacted with an elbow to the chest. The punishment Aguilar decided on was a direct red for the elbow (which was justifiable if a little harsh) and nothing for the hair pulling (which actually caused the incident). Clearly Bravo should not have reacted as he did, but the referee had given little protection to the players and Pérez should have had a caution.

Not long after half time, despite more or less continuing to control possession, Pumas were down to nine. Patiño came out carelessly dragging his foot out, despite the fact there was little danger, and succeeded in felling Pérez and earning the second red of the night. Orlando Pineda came off and Alejandro Palacios took over in goal, and looked a little more secure.

The rest of the match was San Francisco pushing forward but short on ideas, and Palencia remaining the loan striker for Pumas. There were one or two close calls, especially some panicky moments on crosses, but generally the away team held on comfortably to take home a point. San Francisco also had a man sent off (Rivera) towards the end for a second yellow card.

Fernando Espinoza (7 minutes) 0 - 1
Alberto Zapata (41) 1 - 1

Pumas: yellow: Cabrera, Espinoza, red: Bravo, Patiño
San Francisco: yellow: Ortega, Jiménez, red: Rivera

Player Ratings
Patiño 4 - unconvincing, missed one cross dreadfully, fumbled a couple more and got sent off in a clumsy fashion
Ramírez 5 - looked at sea but settled as the game went on
González 5 - not bad but Pumas needed more direction from a man of his experience
Espinoza 7 - the best player on the field and also got the goal. Dynamic and creative.
Pineda 5 - looked poor in the air and his marking was suspect but showed commitment
Diego 5 - despite a lot of ball was unable to influence the shape of the game
Chiapas 5 - is still being switched around from position to position. He needs to settle
Rosas 6 - could develop into a decent player but the clock is ticking on the return of Iñiguez and later Barrera
Palencia 6 - worked hard, but isolated for much of the game
Bravo 5 - not match fit and a foolish loss of control, despite the provocation, cut his debut short
Palacios, A 5 - steadier than Patiño but that is not saying much
Medina 5 - had little to do but steady a nine-man line-up
Cortés - only came on in the dying seconds

Tuca 5 - no blame can be cast on Tuca for the sendings off, and without them Pumas should have gone on to win. Nevertheless it is questionable to say the least playing a reserve team in an international competition. Wasn't that Miguel España's mistake?

Elsewhere in Mexico
Chivas scraped through unconvincingly to the last 16 of the Copa Sudamericana. Leading 2-1 from the away leg against Aragua, they stumbled to a 1-1 draw at home, Sergio Santana scoring and missing a penalty, and so go forward 3-2 on aggregate.

San Luis also made it to the round of 16, losing 3-2 in Ecuador against Deportivo Quito, but going through by virtue of their 3-1 win in the first leg in San Luis.

Santos picked up three points at home to Municipal in the CONCACAF Champions League, winning 3-2 at home thanks to a late goal from Vuoso. A weak and strangely aligned Cruz Azul team was brushed aside 2-0 by Honduran Champions Marathón.

Atlante looked the most impressive of the Mexican sides in the competition, and won reasonably comfortably with a young side against Olimpia of Honduras, despite the narrow 1-0 scoreline. The goal came in the first half from Arturo Muñoz.

The Mexican Federation has announced that from Game 10 a pink ball will be used in the league, as in previous tournaments, to support Breast Cancer awareness.

Next Up
Pumas entertain ex-leaders San Luis in the Olympic Stadium on Sunday. The pick of the other games is Cruz Azul v Santos. Pumas Morelos don't play this weekend.


At 22:21, Blogger DT said...

Just realised that this question should be here not on the Tigres post, sorry:-

"I meant to ask - do you know anything about the San Francisco manager Gary Stempel? Here (where I think he has managed previously) he is always referred to as "Panameño-Inglés", I was wondering if you knew his story?"

I felt Pumas were a little too happy to sit on the draw after the home player got red - they had been reasonably comfortable with 2 men less, maybe could have pushed a little.

Odin Patiño annoyed me with a big show of surprise at his red - his foot was nearly head high, and full speed and nowhere near the ball - on the last man, what do you expect .....

and HEY! don't be so harsh on a tidish Salvadorian ref!

At 15:53, Blogger John Kelly said...

Sorry I don't know anything about Stempel. Do you?

Pumas had the wrong line up, and go scared since a defeat would have been a disaster.

Odin Patiño's display, as I have said, was shocking.

The referee was ok, but not great. But between him and the linesman they got the Bravo thing wrong.

At 00:33, Blogger DT said...

No I do not, sorry I will look into it, and I will try and interview him when he comes here.

Well I always like to see a ref use his linesman, and trust him, and in my day any kind of retaliation was a red card offence. What seems to happen sometimes is that refs seem to allow that red card to sort of "cancel out" the original offence, and it should not. So I guess I am advocating a yellow for home player, red for Bravo, but I don't believe that.

It seems that in Latin America the old elbow thing is out of control, any suspicion of an elbow is a red, which means a player fighting to break free from an illegal hold often gets a red card, where there is simply no intention, and often very little contact.

It is SO obvious to me, that the currency has been debased, thus detracting from the full on deliberate elbow to head deterent it is suppose to be.

All of them fucking twats, and I really despair for the game at the moment.

At 18:00, Blogger Richard said...

I kind of agree that retaliation should be a sending-off offence, but you are certainly right that a red card given in that kind of situation should not "cancel out" a previous offence. I would also be in favour of video reviews on red and yellow cards, and other contentious "ungentlemanly conduct" issues (ie not fouls). Then suspensions for poor refereeing decisions can be rectified, and players' disciplinary records updated in the event of foul play discovered, which might discourage offenders.

Players seen to be trying to get another player booked or sent off should be cautioned as far as I am concerned - there is no place for it in the game. It was fairly unsightly to see Pérez, the original aggressor, rolling around on the floor as if he had acute appendicitis until the red card was produced and then getting up and trotting away.

You are also right about use of the elbow. If it is used to free oneself of an opponent who is committing foul play, and the elbow is not to the head, then for me it should be yellow not red. That is arguably the case with the Bravo incident.

There is little consistency between federations over the award of red and yellow cards, and it is clearly something which FIFA should look into.

Patiño's card was a clear red, but as far as I could make out, a completely unnecessary gruesome challenge to make...


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