Late strike earns Tigres first SCCL title

Andre-Pierre Gignac fired in a late strike to earn Tigres their first Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League title with a 2-1 victory over Los Angeles FC in the 2020 Final on Tuesday night at Exploria Stadium in Orlando, Florida.

With the victory, Tigres have qualified for next February’s 2020 FIFA Club World Cup in Qatar.

There was an intense pace from the very start, with both teams looking to pressure the opposing defense into an error. LAFC was first to find a scoring chance with a Diego Rossi shot that curled over the crossbar in the 26’, but on the whole, opportunities were far and few between for both sides.

Tigres looked to take control at the start of the second half and Gignac had a good crack in the 49’ but saw his shot curl wide. Back came LAFC the other way through Carlos Vela in the 55, only for his lofted shot to float wide.

The breakthrough would come in the 61’, with Vela and Mark-Anthony Kaye combining well in the Tigres half and Kaye serving up a cross that Rossi lofted into goal to make it 1-0 to LAFC.

Tigres would have an answer though and Hugo Ayala pulled his side level 1-1 in the 72’ by turning in a header off a corner kick to set up a grandstand finish.

The momentum was with Tigres and a surging run into the LAFC area from Luis Rodriguez produced Gignac’s moment of magic, with Rodriguez drawing a pair of defenders before dishing to the French striker, who fired a right-footed shot into net to give Tigres the 2-1 advantage.

LAFC committed numbers forward in hopes of a response, but the Tigres defense held firm to nail down the victory to earn a first Concacaf crown.