Apertura 2016 Week 2 Preview: Saturday’s Games

liga mxJaguares de Chiapas vs Pachuca – 6:00 PM – Univision Deportes
Jaguares de Chiapas (15th) fell 2-0 to América last weekend and José Saturnino Cardozo will now look for his first win in charge of the Chiapanecos when they return home for this one. Jaguares struggled both offensively and defensively last season, and they will not want last week’s shutout loss to turn into a trend. They are just hovering on the edge of the relegation fight, and with another few losses they could find themselves right in the thick of it.

As for Pachuca (1st), the Tuzos defeated León 5-1 last weekend to start their season off on the right foot and keep their eight-month home unbeaten streak alive. Pachuca struggled on the road last season, though, with just two wins in nine matches. They will want a better road record this season, and they will be full of confidence after last weekend’s romp, which featured four different goalscorers. The Tuzos will also be more rested than their opponents, as Jaguares had a Copa MX match in midweek, a 1-1 draw with Cafetaleros.

Cruz Azul vs Pumas UNAM – 6:00 PM – Unimás
Cruz Azul (11th) drew 0-0 with Necaxa last weekend and will now look for their first win in front of their home crowd here. La Máquina did pick up a win in the Copa MX in midweek, where they defeated Coras Tepic 2-0, and they will try to carry that form over into league play.

As for Pumas UNAM (5th), the universitarios beat Chivas de Guadalajara 1-0 last weekend thanks to an own-goal and a missed PK. They will look for a more convincing win on the road this weekend, and they will have the advantage of not having played a midweek game. However, Pumas struggled on the road last season, with just two wins in their eight away games.

Tigres UANL vs Atlas – 8:00 PM – Unimás
Tigres UANL (10th) drew 0-0 with Santos Laguna last weekend in a game where new signing Ismael Sosa had a goal controversially disallowed. Sosa and the rest will look to get on the board here and earn their first win of the season for the home crowd in the Volcán. The universitarios had one of the best defensive records in the league last season, and they allowed just eight goals at home. They will look to build on last weekend’s shutout here as Ricardo Ferretti returns to the bench after his suspension.

As for Atlas (9th), the Rojinegros also drew in week one, allowing a late equalizer against Toluca. Atlas was much the better team in that game despite playing down a man for the entire second half, and the Rojinegros will look to see what they can do with all 11 men on the field in this one, although, of course, Javier Salas is suspended for this game. Nevertheless, there were a lot of positives in last week’s performance and they will look to build on them here.

Monarcas Morelia vs Querétaro – 8:00 PM – Azteca America
Monarcas Morelia (17th) fell 2-0 to Tijuana last weekend and will now look for their first win of the season when they return home to the Estadio Morelos. Morelia is in 17th place in the relegation standings and they need to pick up points at home if they want to avoid the drop. It’s still early, of course, but they are eight points out of 16th and they will want to start closing the gap as soon as possible. They were fairly dominant at home last season, with five wins, three draws, and just one loss, and they will look to continue that form here.

As for Querétaro (3rd), the Gallos Blancos dispatched Veracruz 2-0 last weekend and they’ll now look to extend that winning streak as they go on the road. Querétaro had a terrible time on the road last season, however, with just one win to go along with six losses and a draw. Their away form will need to improve dramatically if they want to make it back to the playoffs this season, but Morelia has become hard to beat at home. The Gallos were active in the Copa MX in midweek, where they fell 1-2 to Puebla.

León vs Necaxa – 8:06 PM – Univision / Univision Deportes
León (18th) suffered a heavy 5-1 loss to Pachuca last weekend and La Fiera will now look to put that defeat behind them in their first home game of the season. They had five wins, one draw, and three losses at home last season and they will have a point to prove after the nature of last week’s defeat. They are winless in all competitions to date after they started their Copa MX campaign with a 1-1 draw against Celaya in midweek. León will be looking for that first win here, but they will be without Juan Ezequiel Cuevas for this one, as he’s suspended for violent conduct.

As for Necaxa (13th), the Rayos drew 0-0 with Cruz Azul in their return to first-division play last weekend. With their first point out of the way, Necaxa will now look for their first win, but they will be facing a team with a point to prove in this game. They will look to take advantage of León’s leaky defense and the absence of Cuevas to get on the scoresheet for the first time this season, and hopefully translate that into a W.

América vs Toluca – 10:00 PM – Unimás
América (2nd) defeated Jaguares de Chiapas 2-0 last weekend and they’ll look to make it two home wins in a row here. They do have a two-game winning streak going in all competitions after a 3-0 defeat of Venados in midweek. The Águilas will have Paolo Goltz back from suspension and they’ll look for another strong defensive performance here; América scored 21 goals at home last season, but they also allowed 14, and they will want to improve on that number this season.

As for Toluca (6th), the Diablos Rojos drew 1-1 with Atlas in a game where they were thoroughly outplayed despite having an extra man for half the game. Toluca is starting the season with a bit of a road swing as renovations continue on the Estadio Nemesio Diez, and they struggled quite a lot on the road last season, not winning until Jornada 15. They will look to avoid a similar run of form under new coach Hernán Crisante, who will be eager for his first win in charge of the Diablos Rojos, particularly after a 3-0 loss in midweek in the Copa MX.

Chivas de Guadalajara vs Monterrey – 10:00 PM – Univision / Univision Deportes
Chivas de Guadalajara (14th) fell 1-0 to Pumas UNAM last weekend in an error-filled game they will be eager to forget. An own goal and a missed penalty doomed them to a loss to open the season and they will now look to get back on track at home in the Estadio Chivas. They have a three-game home winning streak going in league play, but last season it took them until Jornada 12 to pick up all three points in front of their home fans. They will look for a convincing win here to erase the memories of last weekend’s loss.

As for Monterrey (8th), the Rayados drew 1-1 with Puebla last weekend and will now go on the road with a severely-depleted attacking line. Edwin Cardona is serving a one-game suspension for violent conduct last weekend while Dorlan Pabón has joined up with Colombia’s Olympic team. Last season’s superlíder will look to take advantage of a shaky Chivas side to show that last season’s good record wasn’t just a one-off, but they will need players to step up to fill the gaps left by Cardona and Pabón.

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