Estadio Azteca, Club América, Liga MX
Club América hosts Tigres UANL in the Apertura 2014 final Via

One game down, just one more to go until we know who will be crowned as the Liga MX's Apertura 2023 champions.

América and Tigres tied in the first leg of the Liga MX final as the reigning champions hosted the 'Azulcremas'. After a close and goalless first half, América took the lead thanks to a Henry Martin penalty in the 51st minute.

América, who had only conceded 14 goals during the regular season, a record which ranked it the best defensive performance during the period, had a moment of relaxation and conceded from a set piece, allowing Tigres back into the game.

The 1-1 draw will see both teams decide the next Liga MX champion at the home of Club América, the legendary Estadio Azteca. The 57-year-old venue has hosted all sorts of events during its illustrious existence. It has seen it all since its grand opening in 1966 with events such as record-breaking Julio César Chávez fights, a Michael Jackson sold-out concert and even a visit from Pope John Paul II in 1999.

The "Santa Úrsula Colossus", as it's known in Mexican culture due to its geographical location, has been the host to multiple finals including four FIFA World Cup finals (two in the men's tournament), a Confederations Cup, two CONCACAF Gold Cup final matches and also 38 Liga MX title-deciders.

Out of the 38 finals played previously, 22 of them were for the deciding second-leg match.

Both finalists have seen success from finals played at this legendary venue. Club América, official tenants of the stadium since 1966, have achieved most of their success playing on this turf.

The 'Águilas' will play their 22nd league final in that venue this Sunday when they host Tigres, holding a 13-4-4 W-L-D record.

Out of the previous 21 games, América was able to win the league title at home in 11 of the 13 instances in which the last game of the Liga MX season was played at its fortress.

América hosted Cruz Azul in the Clausura 2013 final, one of the most unbelievable outcomes in Liga MX history (Via Club América's official YouTube channel)

The last team to spoil the party for the hosts was actually Tigres' archrivals, Rayados de Monterrey, during the Apertura 2019 tournament, defeating América in a dramatic penalty shoot-out.

Even though América holds the record for most league titles won on the Azteca turf, there have been six other teams that were also able to reach the glory, sometimes to América's expense.

Teams to win Liga MX titles When playing second-leg at Estadio Azteca

Club América – 11
Cruz Azul – 5
Necaxa – 2
Tigres UANL – 1
Pumas UNAM – 1
Club León – 1
Monterrey – 1

Even considering América's historical dominance, it will not be an easy task to dethrone the reigning champs' Tigres. The visitors too have previous experience of winning a league title in front of more than 80,000 fans: it happened when they defeated Atlante in a penalty shoot-out during the 1981-82 final.

If Robert Dante Siboldi's side wants to win back-to-back league titles, they will have to do something the club has never been able to achieve in its previous four attempts: win a final at Estadio Azteca.

Tigres have played four times at the Azteca in final rounds and have never won during regulation. Their record includes two draws and two losses, including the 3-0 loss against América in 2014 that gave the hosts the Apertura 2014 title.

A curious fact to note coming into Sunday's match is that, since André-Pierre Gignac's arrival to Tigres in 2015, the 'Felinos' have played in six previous finals with 5 of them being decided away from their home stadium (they won four titles, including three in a row).

This Sunday, Estadio Azteca will be home to yet another historic and electrifying night with two of the best teams in modern Mexican soccer facing each other. André-Pierre Gignac could score a 200th goal in Mexican soccer to propel Tigres to a 'bicampeonato,' André Jardine could finish off a historic season for Club América with the club's first league title since 2018. Only the Estadio Azteca's grass, who has seen it all, knows the outcome.

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