Partially due to a small sample size, but it’s tough to think of some serious differences between Atlas and Club America.
Both teams are starting off the 2021 Apertura with two wins and a draw, and in support, their backlines have been incredible with holding off attacking chances.
There’s a lot to like from their managers as well.
Atlas coach Diego Cocca deserves credit for shaping his team into a well-organized unit, and over at America, Santiago Solari has quietly built a strong foundation for the Mexico City giants.
With not much on the line, it wouldn’t be much of a surprise to see either team recognizing the strength of the other and willingly taking a step back.
If this were at the Estadio Azteca it would be a different conversation, but with Atlas as hosts, it should be level.
How to Watch Atlas vs Club America
|Atlas vs Club America Information|
|Teams||Atlas vs Club America|
|Location||Estadio Jalisco (Guadalajara, Mexico)|
|Time||Sunday, August 15th at 3:00pm PT/6:00pm ET|
|How to Watch||Univision, TUDN|
As is the custom for the first few weeks of the Liga MX season, let’s dive into how things have gone for both clubs.
For America, there’s a reserved amount of enthusiasm surrounding their project.
Although the ambitions of the organization tend to be far too high, it isn’t easy to find faults with the team that has three wins in a row in all competitions.
Regardless of his lack of Liga MX experience before 2021, Solari has proven his doubters wrong.
In fact, if we’re including friendlies, America are currently in the middle of a eight-game undefeated streak that features seven wins in all competitions.
It’s admirable, and yet, a draw could still be expected this Sunday…
There are no doubts that Cocca has already fine-tuned his backline.
After three Liga MX matches, Atlas have yet to allow a single goal.
They are the only team in the Apertura that has yet to do so, and even if we look at xGA (expected goals against) numbers, their tally is the third-lowest in Liga MX.
And most importantly, it is lower than that of America’s.
Nonetheless, we are predicting a tie after all, and there are a few players within the America setup that should score at least a goal or two this Sunday.
As tempting as it is to look towards a victory for Atlas, America will once again make this a competitive battle.
They have one more goal than Atlas so far this season, and on paper, their squad should be able to give some trouble to any defenders that they will go up against.
Marquee names like Federico Viñas, Mauro Lainez, Richard Sanchez, Santiago Naveda and countless others could take control of the game by themselves.
More than likely, America probably will, but when looking at performances from the Apertura so far, it’ll probably come down to those in the net who define the upcoming result.
We need to give credit to some of the unsung heroes: The goalkeepers.
Over at Atlas, Camilo Vargas has been superb with his three clean sheets that have guided his team to their undefeated start.
America’s Oscar Jimenez has already averaged 4.3 saves per game, and although Guillermo Ochia is now back in the picture, he could earn another start this weekend.
No matter the arguments that either team or fanbase could make, in the end, it has been the goalkeepers who have truly helped secure valuable points.
And on Sunday, they’ll be the stars of this encounter.
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Freelance writer Cesar Hernandez is a specialist in all things American and Mexican soccer. He has written for ESPN FC, The Athletic, The Guardian, FourFourTwo, VICE Sports and several other publications. Along with writing and previous radio appearances on the BBC, talkSPORT and SiriusXM FC, Cesar is also a member of the Mexican Soccer Show podcast. Email: [email protected]More info on Cesar Hernandez
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