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Apertura 2015 Quarterfinals: First Legs – Where to Watch

liga mxThe qualified teams are known and the schedule is set. The Apertura 2015 playoffs begin this week with the quarterfinals, which will be played over two legs.

This is a total goals, aggregate score series; away goals are tiebreakers. Should both the aggregate and the away goals be tied at the end of a series, the higher seed will advance.

The first leg schedules are below; all times Eastern, home team listed first.

Quarterfinal First Legs

Wednesday, November 25
América (6) vs León (3) – 8:00 PM – Univision Deportes / Online
Tigres UANL (5) vs Jaguares de Chiapas (4) – 10:00 PM – Univision Deportes / Online

Thursday, November 26
Veracruz (8) vs Pumas UNAM (1) – 8:00 PM – Univision Deportes / Online
Puebla (7) vs Toluca (2) – 10:00 PM – Univision Deportes / Online

Edgar Castillo Undergoes Surgery

Monterrey defender Edgar Castillo sat out the last game of the Apertura 2015 with a foot injury, which has proven to be more serious than initially thought.

The Rayados reported that Castillo underwent surgery today to address an injury to the sesamoid bone of his left foot. Sesamoids are bones that are embedded in tendons and the sesamoid bones in the foot are located in the ball of the foot, under the big toe joint.

Monterrey estimates that Castillo will be sidelined between four to six weeks, which would put his return in late December or early January, in time for the start of the Clausura 2016 campaign.

Liga MX Referee Assignments: Apertura 2015 Quarterfinals – First Legs

liga mxThe referees, assistant referees, and fourth officials for the first legs of the Apertura 2015 quarterfinals.

América vs León
Referee: César Arturo Ramos Palazuelos
Assistant 1: Salvador Rodríguez Gorrocino
Assistant 2: Javier Santacruz Romo
Fourth Official: Paul Enrique Delgadillo Haro

Tigres UANL vs Jaguares de Chiapas
Referee: Erick Yair Miranda Galindo
Assistant 1: Miguel Ángel Hernández Paredes
Assistant 2: Pablo Israel Hernández Luna
Fourth Official: Miguel Ángel Flores Rodríguez

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Apertura 2015 Quarterfinals Preview: Thursday’s Games

Veracruz vs Pumas UNAM – 8:00 PM – Univision Deportes
Veracruz (8th) beat Monarcas Morelia 1-2 in their last regular season game to end their two-game winless streak. The Tiburones Rojos haven’t been doing so well at home lately, though, with three losses in their last four games in the Estadio Luis Pirata Fuente – after they went unbeaten in their first five home games this season. Veracruz will be looking to get back to winning ways in this one as they are very much the underdogs in this series and they need a positive result in their home leg.

As for Pumas UNAM (1st), the universitarios drew 1-1 with América in Jornada 17 to extend their unbeaten streak to three games. Pumas currently have a four-game road unbeaten streak as well. The Superlíderes have the league’s best attack with 37 goals scored, and 18 of those goals came on the road. In addition, they scored in every single game this season. The chances of Veracruz keeping a shutout here are slim, and away goals are a valuable commodity in the playoffs.

In the lone regular season meeting between these two, Pumas UNAM beat Veracruz 3-0 at Pumas in Jornada 8.

Puebla vs Toluca – 10:00 PM – Univision Deportes
Puebla (7th) drew 0-0 with Querétaro in their last regular season game to keep the Poblanos unbeaten in two. Puebla has a two-game home winning streak going and they will be back in their newly renovated Estadio Cuauhtémoc for this one. Puebla is tied for the best home record among the playoff teams and they will want to make their home field advantage pay off here, especially considering that they are the lowest-scoring team to make the Liguilla.

As for Toluca (2nd), the Diablos Rojos beat Monterrey 3-1 in Jornada 17 to extend their winning streak to two games. Toluca won their last road game as well and has the second-best road record of the Liguilla teams with 16 points from their eight away games. Toluca has the second-best attack as well, with 33 goals scored, and they will look for an away goal or two in this one.

In the lone regular season meeting between these two, Puebla beat Toluca 1-0 at Puebla in Jornada 4.

Apertura 2015 Quarterfinals Preview: Wednesday’s Games

América vs León – 8:00 PM – Univision Deportes
América (6th) finished the regular season with a 1-1 draw against Pumas UNAM, a result that keeps the Águilas winless in two overall and winless in two at home. América has won just one of their last five games in the Estadio Azteca and they have the worst home record of any of the Liguilla teams, with just 10 points from their eight home games. The Águilas will look to put those troubles behind them with a positive result in this series opener, but they will be without Osvaldo Martínez for this game after he was suspended for yellow-card accumulation.

As for León (3rd), La Fiera finished the regular season with a comfortable 3-0 win against Dorados to give them two wins in their last three games. The road hasn’t been overly kind to León this season, though, and they are mired in a five-game road losing streak. Three of those losses were by shutout, and that’s something León will definitely want to avoid here, given the value of away goals as tiebreakers. However, both Carlos Peña and Mauro Boselli are questionable for this game with injuries, which could make things difficult for La Fiera.

In the lone regular season meeting between these two, León beat América 3-0 at León in Jornada 11.

Tigres UANL vs Jaguares de Chiapas – 10:00 PM – Univision Deportes
Tigres UANL (5th) played out a 0-0 draw with Cruz Azul in their last regular season game, a result that keeps Tigres unbeaten in five overall and unbeaten in three at home. Tigres had the league’s best defensive record in the regular season, allowing just 16 goals. The universitarios will look for another strong defensive showing here as they will try to prevent Jaguares from picking up a valuable away goal.

As for Jaguares de Chiapas (4th), they beat Pachuca 3-2 in Jornada 17 to extend their winning streak to four games and their unbeaten streak to five games. Jaguares have also won their last two away games and have scored in each of their road games save one. However, Jaguares have also allowed a lot of goals this season, giving up multiple goals in five of their last six games.

In the lone regular season meeting between these two, Tigres UANL beat Jaguares 4-1 at Tigres in Jornada 5.

Disciplinary Report: Apertura 2015 Week 17

disciplinary reportThe Disciplinary Committee has suspended two players and one assistant coach in the aftermath of this weekend’s Jornada 17 games.

Osvaldo Martínez of Club América and Walter Gargano of Monterrey were both suspended one game for yellow-card accumulation after they received their fifth cautions of the season this weekend.

Martínez will sit out América’s quarterfinal first leg match against León, while Gargano will have to wait for the Clausura 2016 tournament to serve his suspension as Monterrey’s season is over.

The Rayados will also be without their assistant coach for the start of next season after Gustavo Lema was given a two-game suspension for constantly protesting the referee crew’s decisions and for a lack of respect towards the match officials.

New Voit Dynamo Introduced for the Apertura 2015 Playoffs

The eight teams competing in the Apertura 2015 Liguilla will play with a special Voit Dynamo introduced specifically for the playoffs.

The dream of being champion starts with the new #InvitadoDeOro, exclusively for the @LIGABancomerMX Liguilla.

The ball features a golden color scheme with symbols that represent honor and achievement, such as laurels.

Officially known as the Dynamo Liguilla, the ball will be used throughout the playoffs, beginning with the first legs of the quarterfinals on November 25th. A limited edition run of 500 balls will be available for purchase.

Apertura 2015 Week 17 Statistics

standings and statisticsPumas UNAM, Toluca, León, Jaguares de Chiapas, Tigres UANL, América, Puebla, and Veracruz will be fighting for the Apertura 2015 league title as they finished in the top eight and qualified for the Liguilla.

In the relegation fight, Dorados remained last after their loss to León, while their relegation rivals Chivas and Monarcas Morelia also lost and Puebla drew.

Pumas finish the season with the best attack in Liga MX with 37 goals scored, followed by Toluca with 33 and León and Monterrey with 32 each. The worst attack belongs to Dorados, who were shutout yet again this weekend to keep their total at 13 goals. They’re followed by Atlas with 17 and Cruz Azul with 19.

In terms of individual goalscoring, Mauro Boselli (León) and Emanuel Villa (Querétaro) shared the scoring title with 13 goals each. Dayro Moreno (Tijuana) was runner-up with 12 goals to his name.

On the defensive side of things, Tigres finish the season with the best defense with just 16 goals conceded, followed by Pumas and Puebla with 20. Pachuca ends the season with the worst defensive record, having shipped 33 goals, followed by León with 31 and Tijuana with 30.

On the disciplinary side of things, the referees handed out 40 yellow cards and no reds this weekend. Morelia finishes the season atop the Fair Play table with their 30 yellow cards and one red, while América ends up at the bottom of the Fair Play standings with their 50 yellow cards – the most in the league – and four reds. Cruz Azul earned the fewest cautions, with 25, while Puebla and Tigres had the most red cards, with six.

League and relegation standings after the jump:

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Chivas de Guadalajara vs Santos Laguna – Jornada 17 Recap and Highlights

chivas santosSantos Laguna came to life in Pako Ayestarán’s last match in charge of the club with a 0-3 win over Chivas de Guadalajara. Both teams were already eliminated from playoff contention, with Chivas looking for a win to improve their positioning in the relegation standings and Santos looking to avoid finishing last in the table.

It was the Laguneros who got what they were looking for in this one.

The game was open and end-to-end in the opening moments, with Santos threatening first through Djaniny before Carlos Salcido tried his luck with a shot from distance for Chivas. Both men were stopped by the goalkeepers.

The breakthrough came in the 34th minute. Bryan Rabello drove into the box, got past several defenders, and sent a bullet into the top corner, out of the reach of Toño Rodríguez, to make it 0-1 for Santos. The visitors nearly doubled their advantage in first-half stoppage time, but their dangerous free kick was kept out by the crossbar.

Chivas made two halftime substitutions as they looked to get control of the game, but instead Santos kept up the pressure and soon added a second. In the 51st minute, José Javier Abella headed home a cross from Néstor Calderón to make it 0-2.

Before Chivas could react, César Ibáñez made it 0-3 just three minutes later, when a deflected shot fell right to his feet in the 54th.

With the 0-3 win, Santos Laguna reaches 17 points while Chivas de Guadalajara remains on 21.



Chivas: José Antonio Rodríguez, Raúl López, Carlos Salcedo, Michael Pérez, Miguel Ángel Ponce, Carlos Fierro (Ángel Zaldívar 46′), Jair Pereira, Marco Fabián, Carlos Salcido (José David Ramírez 46′), Carlos Cisneros (Michel Vázquez 62′), Omar Bravo.

Santos: Agustín Marchesín, José Javier Abella, Carlos Izquierdoz, Néstor Araujo, César Ibáñez, Diego Hernán González, Jesús Molina, Andrés Rentería (Alonso Escoboza 83′), Néstor Calderón (Edson Rivera 90′), Djaniny Tavares, Bryan Rabello. 

Toluca vs Monterrey – Jornada 17 Recap and Highlights

toluca monterrey1Toluca guaranteed themselves a spot in the 2016 Copa Libertadores with a 3-1 victory over Monterrey on Sunday. The win lifted the Diablos Rojos, who were already qualified for the playoffs, into second place, while the Rayados remained outside the Liguilla in ninth place.

Toluca needed just a draw to qualify for the Libertadores, while Monterrey, already mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, was just looking to play spoiler. The opening stanza was lacking in clear chances and neither goalkeeper had much to do, although Jona Orozco did make one great save when he punched the ball over the bar.

Toluca thought they had taken the lead in the 68th minute, but Enrique Triverio’s would-be goal was incorrectly disallowed for offside. Two minutes later, the Rayados had the ball in the back of the net, but Dorlan Pabón’s free kick was also questionably disallowed, and the game remained goalless.

Finally, in the 73rd minute, Christian Cueva sent a cross into the box and Triverio, the Diablos’ leading goalscorer, headed it past Orozco to make it 1-0.

Monterrey quickly found a response, with José María Basanta making it 1-1 in the 80th minute. That draw still would have been enough for Toluca, but they didn’t sit back and play for it; instead, they continued to attack.

Triverio completed his brace in the 84th minute to restore the home team’s advantage, and then Fernando Uribe put the icing on the cake in stoppage time when he finished off a pass from Nicolás Saucedo to make it 3-1.

With the 3-1 win, Toluca reaches 32 points while Monterrey remains on 23.



Toluca: Alfredo Talavera, Moisés Velasco (Darío Bottinelli 93′), Paulo da Silva, Aarón Galindo, Omar Arellano, Erbin Tejo, Antonio Ríos, Jordan Silva, Fernando Uribe, Francisco Gamboa (Christian Cueva 46′), Enrique Triverio (Nicolás Saucedo 88′).

Monterrey: Jonathan Orozco, Efraín Juárez, José María Basanta, Ricardo Osorio, César Montes, Pablo Barrera (Neri Cardozo 84′), Jesús Zavala (Cándido Ramírez 75′), Walter Gargano, Edwin Cardona, Dorlan Pabón (Aldo de Nigris 81′), Rogelio Funes Mori.