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Santos Laguna have won 2 of their last five meetings with Cruz Azul, but this week the match is likely to end in a draw.
Pick made on 08/04/2022 at 05:20 PM EST
Santos Laguna defeated Cruz Azul in their last meeting and are unbeaten in the last three. However, with both sides in similar form this season, they could end up drawing yet another game.
Santos Laguna needed an injury-time goal to beat Cruz Azul earlier this season. Diego Medina scored in the 94th minute of the match to seal the win after they took an early lead in the 5th minute.
Azul dominated the game but fell behind early after Harold Preciado scored. Uriel Antuna had the chance to equalize in the 21st minute, but Carlos Acevedo saved his penalty, and the score line remained unchanged until midway through the second half.
José Rivero managed to get the equalizer for Azul, and they looked set to get a point from the match. However, Medina scored in the dying seconds to seal the win for Santos in a season they finished outside the playoff spots.
The last time Azul defeated Santos was in last year’s Clausura. They had just 36% possession in the game but managed to get the lone goal in the match.
Luis Romo scored in the 71st minute to help his side collect all three points from the game. Despite having 64% of the ball, Santos Laguna only managed to get a single shot on target from the 16 efforts.
Both sides made it to the playoffs last year in the Apertura and will be keen on doing that again this time around. Santos Laguna could not repeat their performances in Clausura and ended up finishing outside the top 12 and missing out on the playoffs.
Finishing outside the playoff places in Clausura saw Santos Laguna make moves in the transfer market. They signed Cecilio Domínguez and José Lozano in the window and also loaned in Juan Brunetta from Godoy Cruz.
Omar Campos and Jordán Carrillo have been promoted from the U20 side as well. There have been a couple of sales with Adrián Lozano and Joel García leaving, while Ulises Rivas has been released.
Santos Laguna’s start to the season was a dramatic one. They were at home to Monterrey and were 2-0 down in the 21st minute. Fernando Gorriarán’s penalty and Félix Torres helped them pull level before halftime, but Rogelio Funes Mori scored after the hour mark to make it 3-2 to the away side.
With five minutes left, Santos Laguna were still chasing the game when Harold Preciado notched the equalizer. They were handed a lifeline in injury time to seal the win, and Brian Lozano made no mistake from the spot. His penalty sealed the win for laguna and helped them make a winning start.
However, the late come-from-behind win did not do much to their confidence. Puebla defeated them 1-0 in the next game and allowed just one shot on target.
Gustavo Ferrareis scored the lone goal of the match as Santos defended well throughout the game. They faced 17 shots, with seven on target but did well to concede just one goal.
Santos needed to come from behind once again when they faced CD Guadalajara in the next game. José de Jesús González handed the away side an early lead in the second half, before Eduardo Aguirre equalized for Santos in the 70th minute to get them a draw.
Their winless run extended to three games when they took on Toluca in the next game week. Leonardo Fernández and Jordan Sierra scored in the first 25 minutes for the home side and Santos had to wait until the 75th minute to pull one back. Hugo Rodríguez’s goal made the score line respectable but did not spark a comeback.
Santos finally managed to end their winless streak with a win against Atlas last weekend. Juan Brunetta scored the long goal of the match right at the hour mark to get them all three points.
Ayrton Preciado has a Tibia Fracture and has been ruled out since February.
Cruz Azul finished 10th in Apertura last season and got better in Clausura. They performed well and finished 8th in the table, but were knocked out by Tigres in the quarterfinals.
They Atlas in the Supercop Liga MX in late June and defeated the Apertura and Clausura champions in a penalty shoot-out.
Azul have signed just one player this season – Carlos Rotondi from Defensa. Apart from that, Gonzalo Carneiro has been loaned in from FC Sion, and Rodrigo Huescas has been promoted from the U20 side.
However, they lost their in-form player Santiago Giménez to Feyenoord last month. The striker was in top form this season but decided a move to the Dutch side was ideal for him and make the jump.
Rómulo Otero, Pablo Aguilar, Adrián Aldrete and Guillermo Allison are also not a part of the current squad after they were released. Luis Ángel Mendoza has taken a break from football after being left out of the final squad by Azul.
Santiago Giménez was the hero for Azul when they faced Tigres UNAL in the first match of the season. The striker scored from the spot in the 93rd minute to seal a dramatic win. Azul had to take the lead three times in the game to beat Tigres 3-2.
However, they could not do much in the next two games as Pachuca and Atlas defeated them. But that did not stop Santiago Giménez from impressing, as he scored in both games to make the score line look respectable.
The Mexican striker was on the scoresheet for the fourth time in a row as he scored twice against Puebla. However, the away side managed to do well and drew with Azul and walked away with a point.
Santiago Giménez’s scoring run came to an end when Azul faced Atletico de San Luis in the fifth game week. The striker got injured in the first five minutes of the second half and could not continue. The match ended goalless, and Azul returned with a point.
Playing their first game of the season without Giménez, Azul managed to do well and get a win against Club Necaxa. Iván Morales scored the lone goal of the match for Azul despite them having just 41% possession and 7 shots, compared to the 17 taken by Necaxa.
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|Teams||Santos Laguna vs Cruz Azul|
|Location||Estadio TSM Corona|
|Time||Saturday, August 6 at 9 pm EST onwards|
|How to watch||Univision networks TUDN and UniMas, ESPN Deportes, Telemundo and Fox Deportes|
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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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