MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Four players were sent off in a red hot Mexican championship final as America beat UANL Tigres 3-0 in the second leg at the Azteca to win a record 12th league title 3-1 on aggregate on Sunday.
It was the perfect way for the Eagles’ Argentine coach Antonio Mohamed to bow out after confirming on Saturday he was leaving the club after news leaked midweek they were lining up Uruguayan Gustavo Matosas his successor.
Ecuador’s Michael Arroyo, Paraguayan central defender Pablo Aguilar and Mexico striker Oribe Peralta scored the goals that dashed Tigres’ dreams of a fourth title after winning the first leg 1-0 at home in Nuevo Leon on Thursday.
America controlled the match from the start and Arroyo gave them the lead in the in the 36th minute with a superb shot from a tight angle that beat goalkeeper Nahuel Guzman, leveling the aggregate score.
After Aguilar had headed America into the lead on the hour, Tigres’ Colombian substitute Hernan Dario Burbano was shown a red card for bringing down goalbound midfielder Miguel Layun less than two minutes after coming on.
Three minutes later the visitors were down to nine men when Argentine midfielder Damian Alvarez was sent off for hitting an opponent.
Argentine goalkeeper Guzman, who had earlier complained that America fans were directing lasers at him, was the third Tigres player sent off in the 72nd minute for a second yellow card for a foul after play had been halted for offside.
Peralta scored America’s third goal in the 78th minute but their substitute Luis Mendoza was shown a straight red card for making fun of Tigres players.
“We were the best team so I‘m very happy for this group of players,” Mohamed told Televisa. “I was brought here to be champions and make history and it’s done.”
On Saturday, he had said: “I’m saying goodbye because my dignity comes before everything else. When there’s talk of another coach, I get my things and head home.
“But this is football, the (directors) are within their rights to hire another coach, I just didn’t like the timing or the manner,” added the Argentine, who joined a year ago when Miguel Herrera left America to take charge of Mexico’s World Cup team.
America have won one more title than arch-rivals Guadalajara.
It was Mohamed’s second Mexican title as coach after leading Tijuana to the Apertura two years ago.
He is being succeeded by Matosas, who steered Leon to the Apeertura and Clausura championships last season.
Writing by Rex Gowar; Editing by Ian Ransom/Patrick Johnston