Here are your five conclusions from the second week of play in the 2019 Liga MX Apertura.
Veracruz and Pachuca put on a show
Raise your hand if at the beginning of the week you had Veracruz and Pachuca as your most entertaining match of the weekend. Tiburones and Tuzos played out to a six-goal thriller on Friday in a 3-3 stalemate at the Estadio Luis “Pirata” Fuente.
Pachuca probably left the stadium as the more disappointed side of the two given that they were twice ahead in the scoreline and and both occasions Veracruz was able to come from a goal down to level the score.
But it wasn’t like this draw was all rainbows and unicorns for Veracruz. In fact, with the result the Tiburones Rojos set the record for most straight games without a win in Liga MX with 28, making them the worst team in the history of Liga MX.
Contenders cancel out in Guanajuato
The big game of the week was always going to take place in Guanajuato where Club León and Club América met in an early-season clash between title contenders. It’s hard to summarize this one, but ultimately, thanks to some excellent goalkeeping and some dodgy decision making from match official Roberto Garcia Orozco, the final score ended 0-0.
The main takeaway here if you are an América fan is that Giovani dos Santos made his official Liga MX debut with Las Águilas. It was a long-time coming for the 30-year-old who started his career at Barcelona and had been struggling with injuries during his last few seasons.
Giovani’s debut is a welcomed one, especially considering the rumors coming from Portugal claiming that FC Porto are interested in both Mateus Uribe and Agustin Marchesin. Marche has been arguably the team’s best player through the course of the last few seasons, and Águilas fans are going to need any feel-good story they can get if they end up losing their starting goalkeeper.
Monterrey is off to a slow start
Atletico San Luis got their first win since returning to the top flight of Mexican fútbol, beating Monterrey 1-0 on Saturday thanks to a first half goal from Argentine defender Matias Catalan.
The bigger story, however, is just how slow Monterrey have started the season. Los Rayados came into this Apertura looking like real contenders for the title, but for whatever reason, they seem to be playing at half speed. Diego Alonso has never really been a manager known for his constancy, and it could be just one of those small negative batches for the Uruguayan. But the reality is this is another season where it is title or bust for Monterrey and there are sectors of their fanbase that are starting to get a little impatient with their coach.
Santos Laguna are the early league leaders
After only two weeks, it is Santos Laguna who has the honor to sit at the very top of the league table. Los Guerreros are a perfect two wins in two matches and have outscored their opponents 6-0, with their latest win coming on Sunday against Juárez.
Santos are very much a work in progress under new coach Guillermo Almada, and judging by their overall play, you get the feeling that this team will most definitely be in the discussion of teams to watch for as the season further progresses. Sure, their schedule has been relatively easy, but on paper, nothing is certain in Liga MX, as Veracruz and Pachuca showed earlier in the week. You have to win your games.
Don’t count out Chivas
Look away Tomas Boy haters. Boy has always been about gritty wins, and a gritty win is what we got on Sunday as Chivas Guadalajara earned their first win of the season, shocking the defending champions Tigres to a 1-0 win at the Estadio Akron.
Obviously, the red card played a huge part in things, but credit has to be given to los Rojiblancos for getting the three points from a match nobody was expecting them to win. Stylistically, there will be criticism as there always is, but this is the kind of game Chivas needed to win at any cost.
At the end, Chivas got a much-needed confidence boost and in the process hopefully earned a little more respect from everybody else in the league. They also get bonus points for having an English-language broadcast to their game. It was far from perfect, but hey, at least they tried...