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Several of the Liga MX’s biggest sides will be looking for their first win of the campaign this weekend, despite it already being the third week of the new season.
Several Liga MX giants still searching for their first win of the Apertura

By Dan Price

Several of the Liga MX’s biggest sides will be looking for their first win of the campaign this weekend, despite it already being the third week of the new season.

Club America, Chivas, Tigres, Santos Laguna, and Monterrey are all still sat on zero points, albeit for highly differing reasons.

Pachuca vs America (Saturday, 9:05pm EDT)

America were understandably affected by the loss of players to Mexico’s Gold Cup triumph in their 4-2 opening weekend loss to Puebla, but had considerably less excuses available for last week’s dismal 3-1 home defeat to Atlas.

Peralta, Quintero, Benedetto, Martinez, and the two Aguilars all played, but they looked like a team short of confidence and lacking in ideas.

There were much better in their comfortable midweek CONCACAF Champions League win over Honduran side Motagua – but with all due respect to their opponents, anything other than an easy America win would have been a major shock.

They badly need all three points against a Pachuca side who are flying high after winning both their opening games. A loss could spell the end of the line for new boss Ignacio Ambriz, especially with the specter of an available-for-work Miguel Herrera looming large over the Azteca. 

Prediction: Pachuca 2-1 America

Tigres vs Chivas (Sunday, 8pm EDT)

Tigres have moved from their usual Saturday evening slot after their Copa Libertadores adventures in midweek. Like America, they sit on zero points after two games, but unlike America they have the excuse that they fielded reserve teams against Toluca and Morelia so they could keep their best players fresh for the South American exploits.

Chivas also sit on zero points, meaning both sides will be desperate to walk away from the game with something. Chivas have looked a shadow of the side that almost made the final of the Clausura, losing 2-0 to Veracruz in the season’s curtain raiser before following it up with a 1-0 loss at home to Cruz Azul in their last outing.

With the extra day off, Tigres will almost certainly give the likes of Andre-Pierre Gignac, Rafael Sobis, Nahuel Guzman, and Juninho their first league start of the season. 

Chivas could easily find themselves on the receiving end of a third-straight defeat, especially with Isaac Brizuela, Jair Pereira, Oswaldo Alanis, and Marco Fabian all injured. After the euphoria of last season, relegation is once again a real possibility if they don’t improve soon.

Prediction: Tigres 2-0 Chivas

Santos Laguna vs Tijuana (Friday, 10:30pm EDT)

The reigning champions Santos have found themselves in the uncomfortable position of shipping five goals in their first two games thanks to a 3-1 loss against Leon and a 2-1 loss against Chiapas.

It might not be as surprising as it first appears. Santos were poor for large parts of the Clausura, only sneaking into the Liguilla thanks to a late-season rally. On the flipside, they were reduced to eight men in the Leon match and badly missed ‘keeper Marchesin and forward Djaniny last weekend. Both are now available after serving their suspensions.

Perhaps more worrying for Santos fans is that boss Pedro Caixinha in being spoken about in the media as a possible candidate for the vacant Mexico job. If he leaves, it would cause an upheaval that the club might not be able to swiftly bounce back from.

Prediction: Santos Laguna 3-1 Tijuana

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