Following a 1-1 draw in Thursday’s first leg at Tigres’ Estadio Universitario, Club América closed out Sunday’s second leg at their Estadio Azteca home ground with a 3-0 win through extra time.
Minutes after the opening whistle, Sunday’s second leg quickly began with an early delay in game. Following a clash between Tigres’ Jesús Angulo and Club América’s Igor Lichnovsky — who earned a yellow due to his challenge — both defenders needed an extended period of time to recover before play resumed in the eighth minute.
After the return to play, the first half developed into a tense one with neither side wanting to make a mistake. Coupled with highlight-worthy saves from Tigres’ Nahuel Guzman and Club América’s Angel Malagon in net, and a big miss from Las Aguilas forward Julián Quiñones, the cautious start to the game entered the halftime break with a 0-0 scoreline.
Pragmatic approaches from both teams continued in the start to the second half, although by the 71st minute, Tigres’ Rafael Carioca nearly opened up the scoresheet after a powerful long-range shot slammed into the woodwork.
In the 80th minute, Club América then found themselves with a one-man advantage in the final stages of the game after a direct red card for Tigres’ Raymundo Fulgencio. After Fulgencio hit Quiñones in the face with his left hand, and an ensuing review from VAR confirmed the decision in the 84th minute, Tigres were left with only 10 players.
With their backs against the wall, Tigres nearly allowed the first goal of the night after Guzman was forced to make a pivotal 90th minute save from Club América’s Diego Valdes. Both unable to find the back of the net after additional injury time, the championship went into extra time to decide the 2023 Apertura champion.
In the first half of extra time, Club América immediately took charge.
Rapidly by the 91st minute, Quiñones picked up a rebound of his own shot and slotted the ball past Guzman. Increasing their pressure even further, Club América then caught Guzman off guard in the 95th minute as the goalkeeper rushed forward to stop a counter and earned a second yellow, thereby bringing Tigres down to nine players.
In the 104th minute and up against Tigres substitute goalkeeper Carlos Rodríguez, Club América pushed their lead to 2-0 after a precise strike from midfielder Richard Sánchez. With a two-man advantage and two-goal lead, Club América then made it 3-0 after a forceful strike from Jonathan “Cabecita” Rodriguez in the 120th minute, moments before the final whistle solidified the win and 2023 Apertura championship.
With a title in hand, manager Andre Jardine becomes the third coach to win a Liga MX trophy in their first season with Club América. Veteran defender Miguel Layun, who returned to Club América in 2021 after a stint in 2010-14, officially ended his professional career on Sunday with his third Liga MX championship, all gained with Las Aguilas.