Chivas de Guadalajara won the Jalisco Clasico 2-0 against Atlas Sunday at the Omnilife stadium to wrap up week 15 action of La Liga MX. The victory puts el Rebaño Sagrado in playoff position with two games left in the Apertura 2012.
Rafael Marquez-Lugo opened scoring in the 11th minute of play, and Marco Fabian scored what could be the best looking goal of week 15. After the loss, Atlas finds itself in a dangerous position on the relegation table.
Chivas coach John Van’t Schip had an easy strategy, attack from the wings and triangulate on the final approach. Tomas Boy’s was a bit different, use long ball to reach Chilean Hector Mancilla who was alone on point.
It was time to play the state derby, and Chivas hit the pitch with the full intent of taking the Clasico while earning a position on the league table that would get them in playoff contention. After 90 minutes, Van’t Schip’s team met their objective.
It took 10 minutes for Marquez-Lugo to put Chivas on the board. Jesus Sanchez beat his marker and attacked from the right wing. He centered to Marquez-Lugo who headed the ball past goalkeeper Alejandro Gallardo to open scoring.
The crowd went wild with the goal, celebrating a Chivas team that had a busy week. Earlier this week, Chivas defeated Xelaju of Guatemala in CONCACAF Champions League play, yet failed to qualify for the quarterfinals of the event.
Atlas could never get a true foothold on the pitch with Gallardo having to play short to clear the ball because the Chivas midfielders were quick to recover the kick-offs.
Olympic gold medalist Marco Fabian scored Chivas’ second, a beauty from 25 yards out. Fabian saw Gallardo was off his line and took the shot. The ball sailed into the keeper’s top left corner to put the game 2-0.
The second half saw an Atlas team that could not find rhythm giving up all initiative to Chivas. Furthermore, Atlas complicated their situation when Hugo Rodriguez received a red card for illegal contact with Omar Arellano.
The victory revives Chivas’ hopes of qualifying for the playoffs. At the end of week 15 Chivas sit in position eight on the league table, the final position eligible to qualify. Chivas visits Queretaro FC on week 16, and then closes the season with a home game against current league leader Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles de Caliente.
As for Atlas, the seriousness of their situation increases. With only two games left, the rojinegros could end the season in a compromising position that could lead to them starting the Clausura 2013 in a relegation spot.
Puebla FC 1, Atlante FC 2
Pumas UNAM 0, America 1