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Pachuca vs Monterrey: Pachuca Are the Defending Liga MX Champions

Written by: Nikhil Kalro
Published March 10, 2023
12 min read
  • Pachuca will host Monterrey at the Hidalgo on Saturday. This should be a fantastic match between two of the strongest sides in Liga MX. 

  • Pachuca are the defending Liga MX champions and sitting in fourth place on the Liga MX table. They are heading into this game off the back of a 0-0 draw to Motagua in the CONCACAF Champions League. 

  • Monterrey have been the best side in the league this season. They’re four points ahead of second-placed Tigres and suffered just one loss all season.  

Pachuca VS Monterrey Odds

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Game result

Odds

Pachuca  

+140

 

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Draw

+220

 

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Monterrey

+187

 

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Pachuca vs Monterrey Pick

Pick:  Pachuca to win and both teams to score.  (+140)

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Pachuca vs Monterrey Prediction

Pachuca vs Monterrey Predictions

This is arguably the game of the weekend. Pachuca dispatched Monterrey  6-2 on aggregate in the Apertura semifinals last season and went on to win the championship. No one could’ve seen Monterrey get a hammering, which shows just how unpredictable the Liga MX is. 

Monterrey were the second-best side in the league last season and favorites to go to the final, but Pachuca had other plans. Pachuca are slight favorites heading into this match, as they’re the home side. Still, Monterrey are first on the league table and have unfinished business – they’ll desperately want to get one over Pachuca after last season’s humiliation. 

This game is hard to call; Pachuca seem to have Monterrey’s number, which is why it’s hard to see past the home side winning this match. 

Previous Meetings

The two sides haven’t faced each other since last season’s semi-final. Pachuca won the second leg 1-0 in the away tie, but most of the hard work was accomplished in the first leg when Pachuca won 5-2. 

Monterrey had a man sent off in the first leg, which didn’t help their cause, but Pachuca looked like the better team even before the sending-off. Even though Pachuca won the second-leg, they were far from convincing in the tie – they only took four shots compared to Monterrey’s 24. 

Of course, the onus was on Monterrey to score the goals, but Pachuca were quite lucky not to concede any goals on the day. It wasn’t a defensive masterclass by any means. There isn’t a lot between the two sides as far as head-to-heads are concerned. 

The two sides have contested in seven draws, Pachuca have won 11 matches, and Monterrey have won 10. Last season’s second leg was played under strange pre-existing circumstances. The game on the weekend will be played very differently, which makes it all the more exciting. 

Pachuca’s First-Half Masterclass Too Much for Club America

Pachuca went straight for Club America’s throat last weekend to round off one of their best performances of the season. Javier Eduardo Lopez opened the scoring in the 4th minute, and Jesus Casiano did the same six minutes later to give Pachuca a 2-0 lead within 10 minutes. 

Roberto de la Rosa found the net in the 28th minute to make it 3-0. The game was wrapped up by half-time, so Pachuca took their foot off the gas in the second half. Club America took 21 shots and had 62% of the possession, but the game was over before Club America got some footing in the game. 

Pachuca had a midweek fixture in the CONCACAF Champions League, so this was the perfect result and performance before the big Champions League game. However, the Champions League game against Motagua wasn’t great – Pachuca had to settle for a 0-0 draw. Pachuca were the better side on the day but weren’t able to turn dominance into something constructive. They’ll have to be more clinical in front of the goal on the weekend. 

Pachuca’s Defense Has Been a Bit of a Worry  

Pachuca are the only team in the top-4 of Liga MX to have conceded over double-digit goals. They have compensated for this by scoring more goals than any other side in the league (21), but they can’t be so leaky if they want to defend their title and win the game on the weekend. 

It has cost them in recent weeks in losses to Toluca and Club Tijuana. Monterrey are more than capable of punishing Pachuca if they aren’t organized at the back. Pachuca also lost 4-1 to Tigres earlier in the season, which was an early sign of their weaknesses at the back. They’ve kept clean sheets against strong sides in their last two games in all competitions, which is a bit encouraging. They’ll need to find that resilience against Monterrey on the weekend. 

Monterrey Cruise Past Juarez in 3-0 Win

Monterrey have won eight of their last nine games in all competitions and had a comfortable 3-0 victory against Juarez over the weekend. Victor Guzman put them ahead in the 22nd minute before second-half goals from Stefan Medina and Rogelio Funes Mori confirmed the three points. 

Strangely, Juarez edged the possession – they had 52% of the ball, but there was no doubting who the better side was. Monterrey took 17 shots to Juarez’s eight, and Juarez worked the Monterrey keeper just twice all game. Liga MX sides tend to sit back a little once they have a lead, and it was no different here. 

Monterrey also earned their third clean sheet of the season in this match. They’ve had a solid defensive record this season – conceded just eight goals – but haven’t earned enough clean sheets. They’ve had some rest compared to Pachuca and must utilize this advantage on the weekend. 

Monterrey Need to Forget About Last Season’s Match 

Monterrey fans will see this game as a great opportunity to get some revenge but the Monterrey manager and players can’t go into this game with that mindset. They can’t get too emotional and have to treat this like a new game.

Pachuca’s defense can be vulnerable, and Monterrey have the players to punish them. Monterrey are also a much better side than last season – they’ve lost just one season and have to believe that last season’s semi-final result was an anomaly. 

Pachuca have had some very difficult opponents in recent weeks and no matter how strong they are, they’ll be a bit fatigued. They’ve faced some top sides like Toluca and Club America, with CONCACAF Champions League games interspersed in there. Even the best teams can’t handle so many big games, so Monterrey have to go for the kill from the first minute. If they get a lead, Pachuca will find it very hard to push for a comeback. 

A win against Pachuca will also give Monterrey a massive psychological boost for the rest of the season. Not only will they get one over a strong team, but they will also put the horrors of last season to bed. 

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How to Watch Pachuca vs Monterrey

  • Teams: Pachuca vs Monterrey

  • Location: Estadio Hidalgo

  • Time: Sunday, March 12 at 7:05 pm ET onwards

  • How to watch: Univision networks TUDN and UniMas, ESPN Deportes, Telemundo and Fox Deportes

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AUTHOR

Nikhil Kalro

681 Articles

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]

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