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Match preview: Tigres UANL vs. Santos Laguna

Santos heads to Nuevo León to take on a Tigres team that is at a crossroads in their season.

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Tigres UANL v Monterrey - Torneo Apertura 2018 Liga MX Photo by Javier Figueroa/Jam Media/Getty Images

Game: Club de Fútbol Tigres de la Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León vs. Club Santos Laguna S.A. de C.V.

Date: Saturday, October 5th

Time: 7:55 p.m. Eastern, 6:55 p.m. Central, 4:55 p.m. Pacific, 11:55 p.m. UTC

Venue: Estadio Universitario (San Nicolas de los Garza, N.L.)

Referees: REF: Jorge Antonio Pérez Durán, AR1: Christian Kiabek Espinosa Zavala, AR2: Enrique Martìnez Sandoval, 4TH: Erick Yair Miranda Galindo

Television: United States - Galavision; Mexico - TUDN

Streaming: fuboTV (Free trial + monthly subscription), Sling TV (Free trial + monthly subscription), Univision NOW

All-time record: Across all competitions, Tigres holds the lead with 37 wins to Santos’ 23 with 28 draws between them. In Liga MX play, Tigres has won 22 to Santos’ 20 with 28 draws. Most notably, Tigres beat Santos in the 2011 Apertura Final for their third championship, while Santos advanced past Tigres in the 2012 Clausura semifinal en route to their fourth championship. Tigres also defeated Santos in the 2018 Campeon de Campeones and in the 2018-19 Concacaf Champions League semifinal round. The last time the clubs met in Liga MX play was on February 2 at Estadio Universitario, with Tigres picking up the 2-1 win. Enner Valencia and André-Pierre Gignac scored for Tigres, while Juilo Furch got Santos’ lone goal.

Tigres UANL v Puebla - Torneo Apertura 2019 Liga MX
André-Pierre Gignac has five of Tigres’ 15 goals on the season.
Photo by Azael Rodriguez/Getty Images

Tigres UANL (4W 5D 2L) has a habit of starting slow and then peaking at the right time. Every season they start slow, and the questions start swirling; if father time has finally caught up with André-Pierre Gignac, if Tuca Ferretti is finally on his way out. It’s a dance done once in the spring and once in the fall, like clockwork.

This season though it’s starting to get to the point where Tigres turns it on, and yet they have won once and lost once after a series of five straight 1-1 draws. Gignac has just five goals, three of which came in a 20 minute span against Necaxa back in Week 4.

Fall is coming though, and their last match was a 2-0 win against cross-town rivals Monterrey (5W 1D 6L), which could be a turning point. Gignac scored one of the goals, and showed that he was still one of the best strikers on this side of the planet.

Pumas UNAM v Santos Laguna - Torneo Apertura 2019 Liga MX
Brian Lozano is third in Liga MX scoring with six goals so far on the season.
Photo by Mauricio Salas/Jam Media/Getty Images

Santos Laguna (7W 2D 2L) however has started strong and remained strong. They’ve lost just twice all season and are the superlíder, sitting two points clear of second place Necaxa (6W 3D 3L) despite Necaxa (and other teams below them) having a game in hand due to Santos’ bye week back in Week 8.

Santos also has two of the league’s three leading goalscorers, with Brian Lozano in third with six and Julio Furch in first with eight. Santos as a team is tied in the lead with Pachuca (5W 3D 4L) with 26 goals, and Pachuca has not had their bye week yet.

Tigres may have a slight advantage in this though, playing in front of their home crowd at the always intimidating Estadio Universitario. Tigres also has allowed the second fewest goals in the league with 11, just two more than Pumas who gave Santos fits last weekend again on the road. It just depends on if Tigres can put it all together in time.