Tampico and Atlante protect the title with a closed duel

Nobody got ahead in the first chapter of the 2021 Apertura Expansion League final. Despite having a blue-tinted stadium with clear support, Tampico Madero could not take advantage of their home and ended up giving a zero draw against Atlante , which leaves the door open for anyone in Saturday night’s return game.

The Tamaulipas team jumped with their sights set on the title as happened exactly a year ago, when they were also led by Gerardo Espinoza. To do this, he put elements such as Eduardo Pérez and Diego Hernández in front, as well as his quarterback, Giovanni Hernández, who had given great results against Atlético Morelia and Dorados de Sinaloa in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively.

Atlante, meanwhile, jumped with the experience of Christian ‘El Hobbit’ Bermúdez in the middle and the physical strength of Argentine striker Ramiro Costa, in a duel in which only two foreigners jumped as starters and both were from the Iron Colts (the other was Brazilian defender Elbis Sousa).

The expectation in terms of goals was high after a year ago, when both played the first final of this league in the 2020 Guardians, they closed with a 1-1 in the first leg and a 2-3 in the second leg, but now, With the experience of two more tournaments on top, both Gerardo Espinoza and Mario García (Atlante coach), booked more and closed the show.

A couple of errors by the young Tamaulipas goalkeeper, Marco Aurelio Millán, opened the door for Atlante in the first half, when he gave the ball to three quarters of the court with his defense in a disadvantageous position and the Colts quickly rode into the area so that Ramiro Costa She pushed in a goal, but it was overruled in the right way by flag-bearer Mayra Mora, who spotted the offside rightly.

It was in the last minutes of the first half when the greatest intensity of the final was experienced. After that invalidated goal at 40 ‘, a few seconds later came a header from the Atlantic defender, Jonathan’ Cuba ‘Sánchez, who was well saved by Millán in the lower left corner, raising sighs of relief among the Tamaulipas fans.

But outside of it, emotions were limited. In fact, the first shot on goal by the local team was until minute 30 and already in the second half, with the entry of forward Luis Loroña there was a little more push, but no clear option on the framework of Humberto ‘Gansito Hernandez.

The title duel in the second leg, to be played on Saturday night (9:00 pm) at the Ciudad de los Deportes stadium, promises a duel also with a lot of strategy and solid defenses. Tampico Madero will go into that match with 400 minutes without conceding, while Atlante turned 463 without receiving as a visitor.

However, the fact that Atlante plays at home does not guarantee him the crown. The Colts barely held a 2-2 draw against Celaya in the semifinals, although they managed to advance thanks to their 0-1 victory in Guanajuato territory; previously, they also tied 0 at home against Venados de Mérida, but another away victory (0-2 in Yucatán) gave them continuity in the league.

For its part, Tampico Madero has a better drive away from home, as they defeated Atlético Morelia and Dorados de Sinaloa 0-2 and 0-1, respectively, in the quarterfinals and semifinals. His feat stood out because both teams were among the top 3 of the regular tournament and, in the case of Dorados, which set a record for points (41), only lost three games in the season and all were precisely against Jaiba Brava.

On Sunday the second edition of the final between Tampico Madero and Atlante will close in just a year and a half, with the Catalans looking to get revenge for that lost title in the 2020 Guardians and that meant the first star in the history of their Tamaulipas rivals. If Atlante wins, he would become the third Expansion League champion in 15 months after Jaiba Brava and Tepatitlán.


Leave a Comment