Chivas Guadalajara sealed their place in the semi finals of the 2016 Super Cup NI as they defeated Dundalk by a scoreline which was quite harsh, in the end, on the Irish lads.
The Mexicans started very brightly and were ahead within 5 minutes as Jose Plascencia latched on to a through ball, although he looked at least 2 yards offside when the ball was played. However, the assistant’s flag stayed down and Plascenia floated a ball towards goal, which dropped over the head of Paul O’Grady into the Dundalk goal.
Dundalk continued to find themselves under pressure, a free kick from Sebastien Fierro forced O’Grady into a good save, but could only push the ball to the path of Miguel Guzman but the Chivas striker skewed his shot wide. The goalscorer Plascenica showed some magnificent wing play as he caused the Dundalk defence a number of problems, the slick passing of the Mexicans was a joy to watch.
Despite further chances for Chivas, including a Guzman effort which grazed the woodwork, Dundalk started to settle down, closing their opponents down quicker and gaining some possession of their own. They managed to take the sting out of the game and got to half time without any more damage.
With the Mexicans having a quiet end to the first half, they freshened things up with 3 changes at the break, with Sebastien Martinez, in particular having an instant impact in the second half. He showed great trickery on the right wing, taking the Dundalk full back out of the game but with the goal at his mercy he decided to square it across the area, and his team mates could not take advantage.
Martinez continued to impress with some great skill and quick feet but the next chance of the game actually fell to Dundalk, their best and only clear cut chance of the game. Luke Higgins got the ball on the right, he showed moves his opponents would have proud have, as he opened up space before firing a shot just wide.
However, it was straight from the above goal kick that the 2nd Chivas goal came. The mExicans played the ball to the edge of the area, forcing a foul from a Dundalk defender. Zahid Munoz stepped up to the take the free kick and found the right hand corner of the net, leaving the keeper standing still.
Within minutes of the 2nd goal, a poor challenge by Conor Soraghan gave Chivas a penalty. It was Munoz against O’Grady again, with a similar result – Munoz finding the right corner of the net, the keeper rooted to the spot.
Dundalk had defended well for the majority of the match but they started to struggle after the 3rdgoal, with another Chivas substitute, Hector Arellano, proving a real thorn in their side. The skilful Arellano fashioned 2 great chances in quick succession, both times shooting straight at the keeper when he should have scored.
It was left to the second half’s most impressive player, Martinez, to score the 4th, although only just. Again, he showed lovely composure on the ball, leaving 2 defenders in his wake to be one on one with the keeper. However, he only just hit the target as the ball went in off the side off the post, when a lot of the crowd thought he had actually missed.
Another great win for a Chivas wide who will be very hard to beat in this year’s competition.
by Ray Baxter (@8ballRB)