Game: Club León vs. Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles de Caliente
Date: Saturday, May 11th
Time: 10:00 p.m. Eastern, 9:00 p.m. Central, 7:00 p.m. Pacific, 2:00 a.m. UTC
Venue: Estadio León (León, Gto.)
Referees: REF: Francisco Chacón Gutiérrez, AR1: Alberto Morín Méndez, AR2: Michel Alejandro Morales Morales, 4TH: Oscar Macías Romo
All-time record: Tijuana holds the all time record in Liga MX play, winning six to León’s five with the clubs drawing three times. Tijuana also holds the record when the clubs were in the Ascenso, with Xolos winning three to La Fiera’s two with four draws between them. In playoff scenarios, Tijuana lost the 2007 Apertura Quarterfinals, beat León in the 2011 Clausura Semifinals, beat them again in the 2012 Apertura Semifinals, and lost to them in the 2016 Apertura Quarterfinals.
This series: León leads 3-1. In the event of a tie, the tiebreakers are away goals and then table position.
León showed that the 12 game winning streak during the regular season was no fluke, stopping a hot Tijuana team dead in their tracks in Baja California on Wednesday. While Xolos started out the match on the front foot, León manager Ignacio Ambríz made several in-game adjustments and the tide turned in favor of La Fiera. At the end of the match, Tijuana looked lucky to escape only being down by a 3-1 scoreline.
León was able to wait until Xolos had punched themselves out with their high press and used the momentum gained off of the second goal to dominate the remainder of the match. Xolos looked like they were out of answers, being bailed out by stellar goalkeeping by Gibran Lajud.
Tijuana must start out strong and beat León at their own game. They can’t afford to waste chances and must do a better job of staying organized in the back. It isn’t an impossible task for Xolos to advance, but it will be far more difficult than most anything they’ve faced this season.