Tigres win insane Liga MX Apertura final after brawl, 5 red cards and a penalty shootout

Tigres UANL won their second straight Liga MX Apertura title on Christmas Day, beating Club America on penalty kicks after a gripping final that didn’t skimp on the drama.

Tigres and America had tied 1-1 in the first leg, and neither side could find a goal in the first 90 minutes on Sunday. Because the Liga MX playoff system doesn’t use an away goal tiebreaker for finals, that took it into extra time, which is when all the fun really began.

Tigres went into extra time down to 10 men after Jorge Torres Nilo’s red card just before the end of regulation, and Club America took advantage as Edson Alvarez’s header gave them a 2-1 aggregate lead.

Tensions boiled over soon thereafter.

First, Ruben Sambueza was sent off for America for a second yellow card, and in stoppage time of the first half a brawl broke out resulting in three more red cards, two for America and one for Tigres. The rest of the final was played 9 vs. 8!

It looked like undermanned America would still hang on for the title, but then Jurgen Damm’s cross found Jesus Duenas in the 119th minute to tie the game, sending the home fans into a frenzy.

In the penalty shootout, Tigres goalkeeper Nahuel Guzman was the hero, saving all three of America’s penalty kicks, while Tigres made all of theirs.

Game over. Apertura over.

We miss you already, Liga MX.

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