Tigres rediscover offense at just the right time, outscore Orlando City 4-2

The Liga MX giants advance to Concachampions quarterfinals where they'll face another MLS club

Sebastián Córdova reacts after scoring to put Tigres ahead 4-1 in their Concacaf Champions Cup match against Orlando City. The Liga MX giants went on to win 4-2.
Sebastián Córdova reacts after scoring to put Tigres ahead 4-1 in their Concacaf Champions Cup match against Orlando City. The Liga MX giants went on to win 4-2. / Azael Rodriguez/GettyImages

Tigres overcame the pre-game loss of star goalie Nahuel Guzmán by outscoring Orlando City to advance to the Concacaf Champions Cup quarterfinals.

Marcelo Flores, André-Pierre Gignac and Sebastián Córdova were the goal-scorers for Tigres who also benefited from a controversial own-goal that came just before Rafa Carioca was ejected in minute 72.

With the 4-2 victory, Robert Siboldi’s team moves on to face the Columbus Crew next month.

Now the Liga MX giants must figure out a way to cope without the enigmatic netminder for at least two months as “El Patón” will miss the remainder of the regular season at home.

Liga MX moves to 3-0 vs MLS in Concachampions

After a disappointing performance over the weekend against Liga MX champs América (a 2-0 loss that wasn’t even that close), Tigres prepared to face Orlando City in a must-win match on Tuesday night.

The two sides had battled to a stalemate in Florida last week, entering “El Volcán” knowing that they had to score to advance because the first leg ended 0-0. Orlando knew they would advance on any draw with goals thanks to the away-goal rule in force.

A few hours before kick-off, the Tigres locker room was rocked with the news that Guzmán would be undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery. All eyes turned to seldom used back-up Carlos Felipe Rodríguez who’d played exactly five times in nearly a year.

The Liga MX giants needed to step up, and step up they did.

Despite a brutal showing against América, Flores was given another start and he rewarded Siboldi with a splendid game. His worm-burner from distance caught Orlando goalie Pedro Gallese leaning the wrong way and Tigres led 1-0 at the 13-minute mark.

Five minutes later, Flores got free inside the box and prepared to trap a lofted pass from Fernando Gorriarán. As the ball arrived, Orlando defender Dagur Dan Thórhallsson slammed into his back. Ref Iván Barton pointed to the spot and Gignac put the home side up 2-0 with only 20 minutes gone.

Orlando narrowed the deficit 4 minutes later after a soft penalty call against Gignac but Tigres played ferocious defense, allowing Rodríguez to settle into the game.

Tigres came out firing on all cylinders in the second half and their aggressiveness paid off with another goal, though it was not without controversy.

Orlando lost possession in their own end and Gignac collected the loose ball wide left. The Frenchman turned and sent a long diagonal pass into the box where Gorriarán ran onto it, heading a powerful shot that Gallese got a piece of. The ball clanged off the underside of the crossbar and bounced off the prone goalie who scrambled to recover it.

But had it crossed the line? The officials ruled it a goal and without any clear video evidence that they were wrong, Orlando found themselves down 3-1 in minute 68.

A few minutes later, Carioca was staring up at the ball as it descended when he swung his right leg to clear it. Unfortunately, Ramiro Enrique had moved in to contest and he caught Carioca's right boot in the neck area. Out came the red card and Tigrs were down to 10 men with nearly 20 minutes to play.

No problem for the veteran Tigres who tightened their lines and frustrated the pressing MLS club. And minutes later, sub Sebastián Córdova found space in the middle of the field and launched a shot from about 35 meters that caught the beleaguered Galleses unawares. Suddenly it was 4-1.

The hosts did cough up a penalty early in stoppage time, but they limited Orlando to one other shot – and Rodríguez was johnny-on-the-spot – and Tigres closed out the 4-2 victory to move on.


With the victory, Liga MX teams are now a perfect 12-0 against MLS sides in knock-out competition after a scoreless draw in the first leg. Pachuca had pulled off a similar feat just a few hours earlier on Thursday.