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SOCCER

Lillini holds hand up for Pumas failure

The Pumas fell to a 2-1 defeat to Puebla and can no longer qualify for the playoffs.

MéxicoUpdate:
MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - SEPTEMBER 18: Andres Lillini, coach of Pumas reacts during the 15th round match between Pumas UNAM and Cruz Azul as part of the Torneo Apertura 2022 Liga MX at Olimpico Universitario Stadium on September 18, 2022 in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Agustin Cuevas/Getty Images)
Agustin CuevasGetty

Universidad Nacional were beaten 2-1 by Puebla at the Cuauhtémoc - a result which left them with no chance of qualifying among the top 12 in the general classification table.

Pumas DT Andrés Lillini acknowledged that the team was not up to the task and will wait for the board’s decision in the coming days. “[Pumas vice-president] Mejía Barón never turned his back on me. The club has always supported me and that is something which I will always appreciate. I never thrown in the towel, either personally or professionally. We have been through some very good times together.

Everything will be put in the balance, but the players are very down, they are feeling low, but they will get over it and take this forward,” the Argentine coach said.

Responsibility

Lillini admitted that he was the first to blame and reiterated that the number of goals that the team has been conceding was key in Pumas’ failure to make the play-offs. “The goals we conceded was a constant throughout the tournament - it’s not because of the players, but it’s hard for us. It causes a negative inertia and that is difficult to explain to the fans, we did not have the dynamics to take this forward and that led to a lack of forcefulness. The situation is back and forth, so the first person who is responsible has to be me,” he said.

Pumas will bid farewell to the 2022 Apertura with a visit to Ciudad Juárez to face the Bravos, after which the board will make a decision on Andrés Lillini’s future.

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