Here are your five conclusions from the fifth week of play in the 2018 Liga MX Apertura.
Chivas clinch first victory of the season
It took a Veracruz team in the midst of chaos for Chivas to earn their very first victory of the 2018 Liga MX Apertura, as they defeated the Tiburones Rojos 2-0 at the Estadio Luis “Pirata” Fuente. Looks, it’s hard to get overly excited about this Chivas win, but all things considered, it’s an important three points away from home and a morale booster for a team that was desperate for a win. The star of the match was none other than Eduardo “La Chofis” Lopez, who scored twice for the Rebaño, including a lovely scoop finish in the 25th minute.
Obviously, if you’ve been keeping track of Liga MX, you’ll know Veracruz has been making all sorts of headlines this week. Their manager resigned due to a contractual dispute, and this has brought into light the problem of “double-contracts” in Liga MX. You can read more about the issue here.
The fact of the matter is we’ve been knowing about this for some time, and Veracruz owner Fidel Kuri has long been one of the more immoral characters in Liga MX. They deserve to be punished to fullest extent of the law.
Cruz Azul stay unbeaten and go top of the league
There’s no stopping Cruz Azul right now. For a second week running, the Cementeros overcame an early red card and earned a commanding 3-0 victory over Club León. Pedro Caixinha’s men are now top of the league table and are the only unbeaten team left in the Apertura. If you are all aboard the Cruz Azul train, we don’t blame you. They look both tactically and mentally ready. Even their new signings are working wonders, with Roberto Alvarez the latest to shine for the Cementeros. The 19-year-old has been a pleasant surprise for Cruz Azul and was responsible for two of the three Cruz Azul goals. Cruz Azul fans, are you excited yet?
Monterrey return to winning ways with win over Pumas
It would have been foolish to think defeat versus Club América would slow Monterrey down. After falling 3-0 to las Águilas last week, Monterrey bounced back with a 1-0 win against Pumas UNAM on Saturday.
Let’s face it. It is still early in the season, and Monterrey are very much still a work in progress. But there was never any denying they would get their groove back sooner rather than later. If you are Pumas fan, however, this defeat is quite worrying. Even after being top of the league table the first four weeks, nobody seemed to be taking the Universitarios very seriously. They have a tendency of collapsing midseason and things don’t get easier with a games vs. Queretaro and rivals Club América coming up.
Diablos Rojos look back in business
After losing to Puebla and being held at home by Chivas, the Diablos Rojos earned their second straight league victory of the season after thumping Xolos de Tijuana 3-0. Toluca have now gone on to beat Tigres and Tijuana in consecutive weeks, which is no easy feat regardless of the circumstances.
As ever, Toluca are one of those teams we tend to ignore quite often in Liga MX, but following their Liga MX Final appearance last season, this is not a team that should be taken for granted. The Diablos Rojos still have a pair of tough games ahead in the immediate future, including Cruz Azul on Wednesday which will serve as a good barometer for both Toluca and the Cementeros.
Santos stay hot
Against all odds, defending champions Santos Laguna are rolling in Liga MX. The Guerreros have not let their outside problemas affect them, and on Sunday, they defeated Tigres 3-1 at the Estadio Corona. For whatever reason, everything just seems to be clicking. Tigres’s defensive problems just keep getting worse with every coming week, and Santos took full advantage with a Jonathan Rodriguez brace. Not even three penalties in favor of Tigres could stop the Guerreros.
It is three straight wins for Santos Laguna now and they find themselves second place in the league table, just one point behind league leaders Cruz Azul. Don’t sleep on the defending champions. Like they showed last season, they have the potential to harvest something special across a full season, no matter who the coach is.