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Santos Laguna will host Club Tijuana at the Estadio Nuevo Corona on Saturday. One point separates the two sides heading into the game.
Santos Laguna are sitting in eighth place on the Liga MX table. The defense has been a big issue for the team all season – they’ve conceded 21 goals already.
Club Tijuana haven’t been very clinical in front of goal this season. They succumbed to their fifth draw of the season last week against Atlas.
Odds taken from BetMGM, sign up to get $1000 bet credits.
Pick: Santos Laguna to win. (-114)
Santos Laguna and Club Tijuana couldn’t be more different on the pitch, but only one point separates the two sides. Both sides are dangling in midtable, with Santos Laguna one point ahead with 12 points after 10 games.
Neither side has played with much conviction this season. Santos Laguna have been extremely leaky in defense – they’ve already conceded 21 goals, which is over two goals a game. Club Tijuana, on the other hand, have been profligate in front of goal – they’ve scored just nine all season.
Santos Laguna were third on the league table last season – they’re capable of far better performances than they’ve shown this season, so they’ll be the favorites heading into this tie. Club Tijuana are looking much better this season, but they’ll be the away side in this game, and it’s hard to envision them scoring a goal in this one. This might just be the perfect game for Santos Laguna to get their season back on track.
There is no separating the two sides as far as head-to-head records are concerned. Both sides have won eight games and drawn each other nine times. Santos Laguna have won the last two matches between the two sides, and they’ve won both games quite comfortably.
The last meeting occurred in August last year – Santos Laguna won 2-0 on the day. This was a highly entertaining game, with both teams taking over 20 shots; however, neither team was able to break the deadlock in the first half.
After 56 minutes, Juan Brunetta finally opened the scoring. Nine minutes later, Nicolas Diaz got sent off, and Club Tijuana were down to 10 men. Javier Marcelo Correa made it 2-0 in the 78th minute to give Santos Laguna the three points.
Santos Laguna have won just once in their last seven league encounters. Their latest loss came against Guadalajara, who wrapped the game up in the first half. Victor Guzman put Guadalajara ahead in the 17th minute and Fernando Beltran made it 2-0 just before the half-time whistle.
Santos Laguna had 60% of the possession but weren’t able to carve out too many opportunities. They took 12 shots to Guadalajara’s 18, and only two found the target. It was an uninspiring display from Santos Laguna, which was the most worrying aspect of the performance.
Despite some of their struggles this season, they’ve always had a goal or two in them, but they never looked like scoring after going a goal down. Guadalajara never looked phased in the second half and took the sting out of the game with ease.
Santos Laguna were a bit fortunate that Guadalajara aren’t a free-scoring team because the result would have looked a lot worse. Santos Laguna conceded the goal far too early last week – they didn’t even give themselves a chance.
They need to change their mentality before heading into matches. This was an away tie, and teams have to earn the right to play before they can start dominating away ties by keeping the ball. Santos Laguna seem to apply the same ideas regardless of venue and team, and it’s starting to cost them.
Last season, Santos Laguna were overpowering teams with their attack, but teams have figured out a way to expose their backline. If Santos Lagna want to continue playing an attractive style, they have to keep a few players back as part of their rest defense, but the team haven’t shown any indication that they’re going to do this. Teams will keep punishing them if they don’t make some adjustments soon.
Club Tijuana were quite underwhelming over the weekend against Atlas but got a point from the game in the end – this was their fifth draw of the season. Julio Firch put Atlas ahead in the 17th minute before Lucas Cavallini got one back for the home side in first-half stoppage time.
There wasn’t a lot between the two sides. Atlas had 52% of the possession and took 14 shots to Club Tijuana’s nine, but they weren’t really deserving of a victory either. Club Tijuana, however, should be doing a lot better in home games.
They have played in some very dry encounters this season, and it’ll be fascinating to see if they can take the bite out of the game on the weekend as well. Santos Laguna are a bit all over the place at the moment, and it remains to be seen if this sort of match-up will suit them or go against them,
Club Tijuana put in lots of poor performances last season and finished in 14th place on the Apertura table. They’re on a knife edge at the moment – it’s hard to confirm that they’ve improved.
They look a bit harder to beat, but one loss could quite easily break their spirit. They’ve won just two games all season and scored just nine goals in 10 games. It’s hard to see them sustain this little over one-point-a-game pace because they carry no attacking threat. Only three points separate them from 17th-placed Queretaro. Things could change very quickly – two losses could see them in the bottom two or three because their goal difference is in the negative.
They have some challenging games against Toluca and Monterrey coming up, so they must get something out of the tie against Santos Laguna over the weekend. A positive result will, of course, be welcome, but it wouldn’t see them climb many places – chances are they’ll pick a few points intermittently and settle for a midtable finish.
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Teams: Santos Laguna vs Club Tijuana
Location: Estadio Nuevo Corona
Time: Sunday, March 12 at 7:05 pm ET onwards
How to watch: Univision networks TUDN and UniMas, ESPN Deportes, Telemundo and Fox Deportes
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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