Morelia Continues Inspired Run


Miguel Sabah scored and set up another in Morelia's 3-0 win over Santos

Tomás Boy was one of my favorite players when I was growing up, even though he played for the enemy. Boy captained Tigres-UANL, in what was unquestionably their golden age. They won their only two titles, gave my Pumas (and everyone else, for that matter) fits. His strong personality helped him lead, and his outstanding play made him a superstar. He was a winner. Boy captained Mexico in the 1986 World Cup, and with a nickname like el jefe, he seemed like a natural fit to become a coach.

But the coaching world has been more of struggle for Boy. Like most Mexican Primera coaches, Boy had become a gun for hire, drifting from club to club in the hopes that the current place might be the right place. More often than not, that place seemed to be Morelia, with stops at Puebla, Atlas, and Veracruz in between.
El Jefe came back to Morelia again in the middle of the last Clausura. This season, though, has been his best in a while.

Boy has aptly blended the foreign players and domestics, the youngsters with the veterans (they were the first team to meet the Under 21 minute requirements) to a third place finish in the table, an automatic spot in the Libertadores, and a birth in the liguilla. Santos was up first for Morelia, and the Guerreros earned a home leg win over Boy’s boys last weekend.

But last night, Morelia emphatically put to end any notion that Santos would advance at Morelia’s expense with a 3-0 beatdown. They face Cruz Azul in the semi finals. The other semi final will pair Toluca and Monterrey.

Morelia may not have the blinding star power that the remaining teams have. They are actually built more from other teams rejects than anything else. They do play with attitude, though, and have been nothing short of methodical, clinical this season. It’s a reflection of their coach.

I sarcastically picked Morelia to win the whole thing at the beginning of the season, not because I believed that they would have a good season, but because one thing I have learned about watching Mexican futbol is that it is wildly unpredictable:
Pumas los their first 8 games.
America beat Toluca 7-2 this season.
Chivas went through three coaches.
Indios did not win one game.
Monterrey is still alive.

Morelia was as good a choice as any.

Yet, I picked against them last week. That’ll learn me.