December 30, 2019 / 5:51 AM / 25 days ago

Monterrey take Mexican title on penalty kicks

Soccer Football - Liga MX - Final - Second Leg - America v Monterrey - Azteca Stadium, Mexico City, Mexico - December 29, 2019 Monterrey's Dorlan Pabon celebrates with the trophy after winning the Liga MX REUTERS/Henry Romero

(Reuters) - Monterrey won their first Mexican league title since 2010 on Sunday but they needed penalty kicks to do it after America beat the visitors 2-1 after extra time to tie the two-legged final at the Aztec stadium.

Nicolas Castillo and Guido Rodriguez missed from the spot for America, and although Stefan Medina missed for Monterrey, it fell to Leonel Vangioni to convert the final kick and give the northern side a 4-2 triumph on penalties after a 3-3 aggregate draw.

It was Antonio Mohamed’s first title win in three previous final appearances as Monterrey coach and capped a brilliant year in which they also won the CONCACAF Champions League.

Monterrey won the first leg 2-1 at home earlier in the week but they were on the back foot for much of Sunday’s game against a side that has won more Mexican league flags than any other.

Federico Vinas opened the scoring after six minutes for the home side with a cracking strike and then Richard Sanchez made it 2-0 four minutes before half time with a superbly placed shot from the edge of the penalty box.

However, Rogelio Funes Mori forced the game into injury time with a quarter of an hour left on the clock as Monterrey took advantage of comical defending by America to make it 2-1 on the night and 3-3 overall.

Neither side could score in the extra 30 minutes and it took penalties for Monterrey to finally secure a long-awaited Apertura title.

Reporting by Andrew Downie; editing by Richard Pullin

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