Heartbreak for Tijuana

[LIBERTADORES CUP] Upstart Tijuana exited the Libertadores Cup without losing in the knockout stage. The Mexican club, for which U.S. international Edgar Castillo started, fell at Ronaldinho's Atletico Mineiro when the home team's keeper, Victor, made a spectacular stop on a penalty kick by Colombian Duvier Riascos in stoppage to preserve a 1-1 tie that was enough to send the Brazilian team through to the semifinals on away goals (aggregate score: 3-3).

A rather fortunate penalty for a foul by Leonardo Silva on Pablo Aguilar was whistled in the second minute of stoppage time, but the Colombian Riascos, who put the Xolos ahead in the 25th minute, shot straight down the middle, and Victor, who dove to his right, kicked the shot away with his trailing foot.

Atletico Mineiro had not lost at home for almost two years, but the Xojos put it under constant pressure in a back-and-forth.

Joe Corona, the Xolos' other U.S. international, did not dress, but San Diego-born youngster Bruno Piceno came on as a sub.

The game ended Tijuana's Libertadores Cup run that included three trips to Brazil after winning Mexico's Torneo Apertura. The Xolos logged more than 69,000 miles -- almost three trips around the world -- during its 13 road games in domestic and international play in 2013.

After the first leg of the Atletico Mineiro series -- a 2-2 tie in Tijuana -- Xolos coach Antonio Mohamed announced he would be returning home to Argentina.

Tijuana's Apertura title also qualified it for the 2013-14 Concacaf Champions League.

2 comments about "Heartbreak for Tijuana".
  1. Luis Arreola, May 31, 2013 at 8:56 a.m.

    CAnt beleive he missed that penalty. Miniero will be champs and no one will have played them as good as Tijuana. Tijuana deserved to win these matches but proved to be the best team on our side of the world.

  2. Aresenal Fan, May 31, 2013 at 4:31 p.m.

    Wow, was starting to look like a run for the Xolos, Oh well, at least we still have Ronaldinho in the competition.

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