Swansea City and Chivas Guadalajara tie
MILWAUKEE (AP) — The friendly between Swansea City and Chivas Guadalajara turned out to be a bit more edgy.
Giovani Hernandez scored on a penalty kick in the 90th minute, lifting Chivas into a 1-1 tie with Swansea in the first professional soccer game at Miller Park on Wednesday night.
A player from each team was ejected. Four players received yellow cards and 23 fouls were called.
“There’s no such thing as a friendly, is there?” Swansea head coach Garry Monk said, laughing. “It was good for us.”
Swansea scored first in the exhibition match when Nathan Dyer controlled a cross from Marvin Emnes in the 57th minute and shot past goalkeeper Luis Ernesto Michel and inside the far post from 15 yards. The Swans lost Neil Taylor and Chivas saw Jesus Sanchez ejected in the 80th minute for a shoving incident.
Chivas forward Carlos Fierro was pulled down in the penalty box in the 90th minute. Goalkeeper Gerhard Tremmel anticipated the kick going to his left, but Hernandez blasted the ball behind him.
“It’s frustrating when you see a goal right at the end of the game,” Swansea midfielder Leon Britton said. “It’s a friendly match and these things happen and you have to get on with it.”
It was the third of four friendlies for Chivas, which opens the regular season in the MX Liga on Sunday.
“I certainly don’t like things to be chippy,” Chivas head coach Carlos Bustos said through an interpreter. “The chippiness really just happened because the other team is certainly more physical. They play in a very physical league. That’s the English Premier League.”
It was Swansea’s first preseason game of a North American tour. The Swans begin the regular season in August.
“Obviously, Chivas were a little bit further ahead of us in terms of their preseason,” Monk said. “We’ve only been doing it for a week and a half in terms of our preseason.”
The Milwaukee Brewers converted their infield and outfield into a pitch approved by Major League Soccer. It stretched between the warning track in left field and the first base line.
Neither team had trouble with the footing despite the pitcher’s mound and a layer of the dirt infield being removed and covered with sod.
The field was 109 yards long, but only 66 wide instead of the usual 70 to 80 yards for an exhibition game.
In order to compensate for the narrower pitch, Monk said the Swans practiced on a field with the same dimensions.
“I thought the pitch was very, very good, considering it’s not a football pitch,” Monk said. “The work they had done on it in such a short space of time, all in all, it played very, very well.”
Bustos said the shorter width really didn’t matter.
“It certainly was a more narrow pitch, but it really didn’t matter to us in the end,” he said. “It didn’t lead to any tactical changes or anything.”