Cruz Azul vs Toluca Prediction, Betting Odds, Picks
- Toluca are the most in-form team in the first few weeks of the new Liga MX tournament
- Guided by some veteran leadership through Rubens Sambueza, Toluca have the most dominant player of the season so far
- Can Cruz Azul multi-task and balance out their busy schedule?
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Cruz Azul vs Toluca Odds
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Cruz Azul vs Toluca Predictions and Picks
Cruz Azul may be the current Liga MX title-holders, but they aren’t playing like it.
They’ve kicked off the 2021 Apertura season with one win, one draw and one loss.
Most recently, Cruz Azul also earned a 1-0 defeat on Wednesday to Monterrey in their first leg of the Concacaf Champions League semifinals.
They seem to be sleepwalking their way through the summer and have a penchant for highly questionable 1st half performances that make things difficult for themselves.
Cruz Azul are stumbling, and despite the fact that they are hosting Saturday’s match, Toluca should have a perfect opportunity to claim three points.
Let’s not forget that Toluca have been perfect in the Apertura so far with three wins out of three.
How to Watch Cruz Azul vs Toluca
|Cruz Azul vs Toluca Information|
|Teams||Cruz Azul vs Toluca|
|Location||Estadio Azteca (Mexico City, Mexico)|
|Time||Saturday, August 14th at 7:00pm PT/10:00pm ET|
|How to Watch||Univision, TUDN|
It’s not out of the ordinary for Liga MX winners to have slow starts to a new season.
Perhaps due to an increasing amount of games or a schedule that includes two tournaments in one year, champions who go further in the playoffs usually need at least a few weeks to catch up.
That seems to be the case with Cruz Azul this season.
After finally ending their curse and winning their first Liga MX championship since the 1990s, the current title-holders have looked tired in the start of the current Apertura.
Manager Juan Reynoso seems to be in no hurry to recalibrate things just yet, and when you consider that 12 of 18 teams make the playoffs, he might not do it soon either.
For all intents and purposes, Cruz Azul continues to be in preseason mode.
And as for Toluca, it’s almost the near opposite as they seek to make a name for themselves as a genuine contender for this season’s trophy.
Toluca Are Playing Inspiring And High-Scoring Soccer
They aren’t wasting any time.
With three wins and eight goals scored in three matches, no team has had a more thrilling start to the Liga MX season than Toluca.
Carried by playmaker and goalscorer Rubens Sambueza, striker Alexis Canelo and defender Haret Ortega, Toluca have been brilliant to watch.
Under the managerial guidance of their former goalkeeper Hernan Cristante, Toluca have been superb with their chance creation and finishing in the final third.
And most importantly, their 37-year-old captain seems to somehow be getting better every day.
Sambueza Has Been On An Absolute Tear In The First Few Weeks Of The Season
Regardless of the fact that he’s just a handful of months away from turning 38, Sambueza has once again emerged as one of the top players in Liga MX.
Crafty with his movement and clever with his distribution, the Argentine can regularly create something out of nothing with his passes for Toluca.
Sambueza already has four assists in three appearances, and in the latest 2-0 win over Club Tijuana, he also collected his second goal as well.
Simply put: No Liga MX player has looked better in the early stages of the Apertura.
Tired Legs And A Busy Schedule Will Hurt Cruz Azul Even More
The bad news for Cruz Azul? Things are only going to get tougher in the near future.
After sluggishly walking through their mid-week CCL loss to Monterrey, they’ll now travel back to Mexico City for Saturday’s game before they play Monterrey again in the CCL just four days later.
They need to make up for their defeat in their 1st leg of the CCL, and depending on where priorities might land, one wouldn’t blame Reynoso for utilizing some backups against Toluca.
Cruz Azul have already won a recent Liga MX title and there’s still plenty of time for them to make a late playoff run.
With that in mind, Toluca might have a good chance to claim a victory against their sidetracked opposition.
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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]