Game: Club Santos Laguna S.A. de C.V. vs. Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles de Caliente
Date: Sunday, February 10th
Time: 7:00 p.m. Eastern, 6:00 p.m. Central, 4:00 p.m. Pacific, 11:00 p.m. UTC
Venue: Estadio Corona TSM (Torreón, Coah.)
Referees: REF: Alejandro Funk Villafañe, AR1: Jose Ibrahim Martinez Chavarria, AR2: Karen Janett Díaz Medina, 4TH: Ricardo Ulises Norman Ortiz
All-time record: Tijuana holds the lead with six wins to Santos’ two. The clubs have also drawn seven times. Their meeting in the Apertura was a 2-2 draw at Estadio Caliente. The last match in Torreón was a 0-0 draw in the 2018 Clausura.
Santos Laguna (2W 1D 2L) heads to the fortress of Estadio Corona TSM to host Tijuana (2W 0D 3L) in the final match of Week 6. Santos has lost only one regular season home match since the start of 2018 and are coming off of a rather strong performance at El Volcán against Tigres UANL (3W 1D 1L) last week, even though the final result was a 2-1 win for the home side.
Santos has started the season slower than the conventional wisdom predicted, losing to Lobos BUAP (2W 1D 2L) and drawing Monarcas Morelia (1W 1D 3L). Every week though Santos has looked stronger and more cohesive on both sides of the ball.
Always a danger with the ball at his feet, Julio Furch regained his scoring touch when he bagged the lone goal against Tigres. The goal was Furch’s first since the week two goal against Monarcas. Furch is one of the league’s elite goalscorers, and if he has regained his scoring touch it will go a long way for Santos in their quest to win their seventh star.
Tijuana’s change has much more sudden. The first few games the offense sputtered, and even bringing back Gustavo “Pantera” Bou from Racing Club did little to boost the offensive output - until last week against Toluca (2W 0D 3L). The offense was constantly dangerous and threatening, scoring two goals and looking like nothing like the team that hadn’t won a home game since last September.
Pairing Bou with Ariel Nahuelpán paid dividends, as the men created constant mis-matches for the Toluca defense. This opened up the field more for attacking midfielders Fabián Castillo and Miller Bolaños, both of whom scored last week.
Santos has a better defense than Toluca however, and it will be seen if the same level of success can be replicated by the Aztec canines - especially in Estadio Corona TSM.