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Club Leon have lost just one out of their last five fixtures. After a goalless draw against Deportivo Toluca, Club Leon suffered a narrow 1-0 loss against CF Pachuca. That result was followed by two back-to-back wins against Queretaro FC and Club Puebla. Last week, FC Juarez held Club Leon to a goalless draw.
The charts are all green for CF Monterrey as they have their eyes firmly set on the title. The club have not dropped a single point after losing against CD Guadalajara on opening day. CF Monterrey have scored a minimum of two goals in every match after their opening-day loss this season.
Despite CF Monterrey possessing such a prolific record, the prediction for this game will be quite tricky considering Club Leon’s recent form. It will be a tightly-contested encounter that sees CF Monterrey scrape past Club Leon.
In 21 Liga MX encounters between these two sides, CF Monterrey have won 11 times, while Club Leon have snatched a win on six occasions. Only four games have ended in draws. In the Apertura 2022 season, an Arturo Gonzalez hat trick and a German Berterame brace helped CF Monterrey thrash Club Leon 5-1.
That victory ended CF Monterrey’s five-game winless run against Club Leon during which they lost three and drew two. This will be the 11th meeting between these two sides at the Estadio Leon. In the last ten, Club Leon have won four, while CF Monterrey have won five and only one match has ended in a draw and that took place in the Clausura 2022 season.
Despite possessing a decent record at the venue, CF Monterrey are winless at the Estadio Leon in the last three games. Their last win in that stadium came in the Apertura 2018 season when Nicolas Sanchez and Rogelio Funes Mori nabbed a 2-0 win over nine-men Club Leon.
After playing seven games in the Clausura season so far, Club Leon find themselves in the seventh spot on the table. The start of the season was quite challenging as they won only one out of their four games.
However, in the last three games, Club Leon have not only dodged defeat but also kept three clean sheets in a row for the first time since March last year. They have won two of these games and drawn one, scoring five goals in the process.
This has given the side the perfect momentum before facing title contenders CF Monterrey. Club Leon possess the potential to be the dark horses this Clausura season. If they can keep CF Monterrey at bay, it will be a humongous achievement for the defense.
While left-back Pedro Hernandez has been out of action since August last year, right-backs Byron Castillo and Jose Ramirez have been on the sidelines since December and are still unavailable for first-team action.
To add to the defensive woes of Club Leon, defender William Tesillo suffered a foot injury earlier this month and has been ruled out of action for at least a few weeks. In addition to the injuries, Club Leon will also be without defender Paul Bellon, who is suspended.
Club Leon usually deploy a 3-5-2 formation and they have been more effective down the right flank this season. Jaine Barreiro has pocketed an assist, while right-back Ivan Moreno has already set up two goals.
Right-sided midfielder Angel Mena has scored two and assisted one as striker Victor Davila has netted two and assisted one. His strike partner, Lucas Di Yorio, has also scored two goals so far this season.
Paul Bellon has also been decent down the left but the defender will be suspended for the upcoming game.
In the Apertura 2022 season, CF Monterrey finished second on the table, just three points behind Club America. In the playoffs, they lost in the semi-finals against eventual champions CF Pachuca.
This season, CF Monterrey have stated their intent with the results. They will not only aim for the top spot but also look to lift the Clausura title at the end of the season. For that to happen, they cannot afford any complacency.
Winning against Club Leon will give CF Monterrey the perfect boost for the next three fixtures which are tricky - against FC Juarez, CF Pachuca, and Tigres UANL. It will also take them six points clear at the top depending on other results in the league.
Rogelio Funes Mori scored five goals in the Apertura 2022 season as German Berterame finished as the club’s leading goalscorer with six goals under his belt. This season, Funes Mori has already scored seven goals in eight games.
His teammate Arturo Gonzalez has also surpassed last season’s tally of four goals after scoring five this season. Gonzalez is the player that CF Monterrey rely on for creativity. The 28-year-old set up six goals last season.
Last season’s top scorer Berterame has also gotten off the mark this season and already added three goals to his tally. At the other end of the pitch, the defense is also doing a decent job with new signing Victor Guzman making the desired impact.
CF Monterrey are scoring two goals per game but are unable to keep clean sheets despite having solid defenders at the back. In eight games so far this season, CF Monterrey have only kept two clean sheets.
Their next opponents, Club Leon, have kept more clean sheets (4) than them. It is quite surprising to see defensive frailties in a side that conceded the fewest goals in the Apertura season.
CF Monterrey conceded just 13 goals in 17 games last season, but this time around, they have already let in seven in eight games. However, if CF Monterrey are able to limit the goal concession average to one per match, they could match their tally of the previous season.
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With an interest in strategy and mathematics, applying that to sports writing was the natural progression. A writer at night and the founder of a gaming company, Nikhil’s previous experience includes working with ESPN for five years. His specialization includes soccer, basketball, tennis, and esports betting. Email: [email protected]More info on Nikhil Kalro
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