MEXICO CITY, Nov 14 (Reuters) - Paraguayan Dario Veron
scored early on to give Pumas UNAM a 1-0 away win over America
in their derby at the Azteca and snatch the eighth and last
berth in the Apertura championship title play-offs on Sunday.
America had already qualified as Group Two winners. The top
two in each of the three groups go through along with the two
next best-placed teams, one of which was Pumas in third spot in
Veron, who netted a loose ball in the 12th minute, said:
"Every time I play against America I get to score.
"I think the team made a great effort to get these three
points that got us our qualification," he told Televisa.
The victory was bad news for Tigres UANL, who had only
managed to draw 2-2 away to Atlas, the team with the worst
record, on Saturday, but would have gone through if Pumas had
Title holders Toluca, who won the Clausura championship in
the second half of last season, failed to make the cut,
finishing fourth in Group Two after a 1-1 draw with Atlante.
Their coach Jose Manuel de la Torre, who is now moving to
his new job as Mexico coach, said the championship had been a
failure for the team he steered to the Clausura title.
"For a team coming from being champions to not qualifying
in the next tournament, of course it's a failure," De la Torre
The other third-placed qualifiers were Concacaf Champions
League title holders Pachuca from Group Two, who will go on to
play at the Club World Cup in Abu Dhabi next month.
Pumas will meet favourites Cruz Azul, who finished top of
the overall standings, in the quarter-finals with the first leg
scheduled for Wednesday.
The other line-ups are: Monterrey v Pachuca, Santos Laguna
v Chiapas and America v San Luis.
Guadalajara, who rival America for popularity and success,
failed to qualify despite a 3-2 away win over Group One winners
Monterrey on Saturday.
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