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It wasn’t a thrilling start to the 2021 Apertura for either Club America or Necaxa.
While America were held scoreless by Queretaro in a 0-0 away draw, Necaxa suffered a 3-0 pummeling at home by Santos Laguna.
Both teams will look to shake off some of their early season rust, and heading into Week 2, it appears as though America are better equipped to rebound.
America have a better manager, a deeper squad, and most importantly, a home field advantage at the historic Estadio Azteca.
|Club America vs Necaxa Information|
|Teams||Club America vs Necaxa|
|Location||Estadio Azteca (Mexico City, Mexico)|
|Time||Saturday, July 31 at 5:00 pm PT/ 8:00 pm ET|
|How to Watch||TUDN, Univision|
How did Week 1 of the new Liga MX season go for both teams?
For Necaxa, frustration is perhaps the best word to use when describing their performance in the 3-0 loss at home to Santos.
They had an early injury, missed several big chances and were often left doing lots of defensive work in their own half of the pitch.
Manager Guillermo Vazquez, already looking bitter on the sidelines, then watched Necaxa give up three goals by the 57th minute.
Necaxa responded with several shots in the 2nd half, most of which didn’t hit the target.
As for America, there was a bit of cautious skepticism for the Mexico City giants.
A 0-0 draw away from home isn’t the worst result, but it’s fair to say that ambitions were higher for the most successful team in the country.
The good news for them though is that they have all of the tools to quickly get on the right track.
If there’s anything that we learned from last season, it’s that America manager Santiago Solari is capable of avoiding mistakes for long periods of time.
Consistency through a practical style of play provided them with a spot at 2nd in the regular-season table and only three losses in 17 games.
More or less he’s got the same core of his roster from earlier this year, and over the summer, he was able to finally have a full preseason with most of his players.
And for what it’s worth, America did in fact look better than Queretaro in their recent 0-0 draw.
With more shots, possession, corners — and an attempt in the 2nd half that hit the woodwork — America were incredibly close to securing a game-winner last week.
If we’re talking about the context and bigger picture for America, the same should be analyzed for Necaxa.
And unfortunately, their latest loss is their third in a row if we’re looking at last season.
In fact, they have five defeats and a draw in their last six matches and have only been able to earn one Liga MX win since January 24th.
Coupled with significant roster turnover during the summer, and it ends up not being all that shocking that they started the Apertura off with a 3-0 loss.
A solid midfield can win matches and America unquestionably have one of the most imposing midfield lines in the league.
24-year-old Real Madrid academy product Alvaro Fidalgo is one of the top playmakers in Liga MX, and alongside him, Richard Sanchez is a well-rounded and intelligent box-to-box player.
In support as a defensive midfielder, Pedro Aquino is a menace with his aggression and stamina.
It’s a joy to watch the three of them work together, and up against Necaxa this weekend, they should have no issues with taking charge and dictating the pace of the game.
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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