Cruz Azul vs Toluca Prediction, Betting Lines & Picks

Cruz Azul vs Toluca Odds

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  • Toluca have become the team to beat in the 2021 Clausura
  • Cruz Azul continues to be one or two steps away from an expected regression
  • Leading Toluca in the attack, Rubens Sambueza has made an early case for himself as the Liga MX MVP of the season so far

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Cruz Azul vs Toluca Predictions and Picks

Both Cruz Azul and Toluca will be riding high into the Liga MX weekend. While Toluca will be feeling self-assured with their place at the top of the table after the latest round of matches, Cruz Azul (and their fans) will be relieved to see their four consecutive victories in a row.

And yet, with questions regarding whether they’ve fully recovered from some off-the-field issues, Cruz Azul’s winning streak could be a short-lived one when they face a determined Toluca.

Toluca have been competitive in every match so far this season, and with a handful of key players beginning to hit their stride, it’s tough to see them gaining a loss in the near future. Cruz Azul will have enough talent to secure at least a goal or two this Saturday, but Toluca will have enough conviction to potentially keep this level.

It’s tempting to look at Toluca sneaking by with a narrow win, but an even scoreline is much more practical.

Pick:

Tie for Cruz Azul vs Toluca

How to Watch Cruz Azul vs Toluca

Cruz Azul vs Toluca Information
What Cruz Azul vs Toluca
Where Estadio Azteca (Mexico City, Mexico)
When Saturday, February 20th at 8:00 PM ET
How to Watch Univision, TUDN

Let’s start with the favorites here, Cruz Azul.

Well-known for not only their talent but also for their tendency for mishaps, there always seems to be some sort of inevitable downfall for the ill-fated team. Now with four wins in hand after starting the season off with two losses in a row, many have started to wonder when things could once again go wrong for the Mexico City side.

And remember, things have already gone astray. Not only did Cruz Azul start the year off with two losses, but they also made headlines for all of the wrong reasons when star player and goalscorer Jonathan “Cabecita” Rodriguez broke the league’s COVID-19 protocol through a small party in January.

Things seem to have been fixed for the most part since then. Despite rumors of the striker wanting to leave Cruz Azul, Rodriguez has returned to the field after a short suspension that made him unavailable for one match last month.

They’ve needed some luck — and Rodriguez back on the field — but the four victories are a clear sign that things are improving for Cruz Azul.

But have they improved enough to defeat an energetic and assertive team like Toluca?

Toluca Are Beginning To Pick Up Steam

Regardless of Cruz Azul’s four wins in a row, Toluca will be marching into Saturday’s match with one more point than their upcoming opponent. With just one loss and an extraordinary total of 13 goals scored, no Liga MX team has been more remarkable than Toluca.

Even in their loss, a 3-2 defeat by Club Tijuana, it was almost inspiring to see the team fight back from an initial 3-0 deficit. Unfazed by their early mistakes, Toluca arguably should have deserved a draw as they immediately stole back possession and the attacking momentum.

This is thanks to key players like Rubens Sambueza, Alexis Canelo, Kevin Castañeda, Miguel Barbieri, and several others who have all fully embraced the managerial style of Hernan Cristante. With plenty of goals under their belts, Los Diablos Rojos could manifest some of the bad luck that Cruz Azul are infamous for…

Despite Recent Success, Cruz Azul Could Still Implode Once Again

There’s something to be said about the non-statistical variable that always seems to knock Cruz Azul out when they’re gaining winnings or developing progress. Widely seen as a cursed club that regularly fails in catastrophic fashion, the question of collapse isn’t usually “if” for Cruz Azul, it’s “when.”

Last season for Cruz Azul, it was being knocked out of the semifinal round of the Liga MX playoffs after taking an initial 4-0 lead in the first of two legs — which, because it was Cruz Azul, wasn’t actually that surprising.

This season? It could be in the form of Cruz Azul once again lifting their fans’ hopes before inevitably stumbling. And even though they’ve got some momentum, there’s reason to believe that their recent wins, on deeper inspection, may not be as promising as they appear. Of their four victories, three finished with more shots on target for the opposition than Cruz Azul.

Toluca’s X-factor: Sambueza

In the 2020 Apertura tournament, many saw Leon’s Luis Montes as the Liga MX MVP. Through his tireless energy and creativity with the ball, the veteran was seen as the most significant factor in what would end up being a championship season for Leon.

Now, near the halfway point of the 2021 Clausura, Sambueza appears to be the leading candidate for that MVP plaudit. With a brilliant mixture of tenacity and finesse, the 37-year-old has become a lightning rod in the attacking build-up for Toluca.

Constantly spraying dangerous passes and occasionally taking his own chances on the net, Sambueza has been a breathtaking week in and week out in the first two months of the tournament.

This weekend, the Argentine will truly be a headache for Cruz Azul.

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Cesar Hernandez

Expert on Soccer

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]