Game: Club Santos Laguna S.A. de C.V. vs. Club Tigres UANL Sinergia Deportiva S.A. de C.V.
Date: Sunday, January 17th
Time: 8:00 p.m. Eastern, 7:00 p.m. Central, 5:00 p.m. Pacific, 1:00 a.m. UTC
Venue: Estadio Corona TSM (Torreón, Coah.)
Referees: REF: Fernando Guerrero Ramírez, AR1: Christian Kiabek Espinosa Zavala, AR2: Jéssica Fernanda Morales Morales, 4TH: Abraham De Jesús Quirarte Contreras, VAR: Eduardo Galvan Basulto, AVAR: Leon Vicente Barajas Anzures
Television: United States - Fox Sports 2, FOX Deportes Network, Fox Sports San Diego, Fox Sports Arizona; Mexico - Fox Sports 2; Belize - FOX Sports 2; Costa Rica - FOX Sports 2; Dominican Republic - FOX Sports 2; El Salvador - FOX Sports 2; Guatemala - FOX Sports 2; Honduras - FOX Sports 2; Nicaragua - FOX Sports 2; Panama - FOX Sports 2; Venezuela - FOX Sports 2
All-time record: Across all competitions, Tigres holds the lead with 29 wins to Santos’ 24 with 28 draws between them. In Liga MX play, Tigres has won 24 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, Carlos Acevedo committed an own goal and Nicolás “El Diente” López scored in stoppage as Tigres won 2-0 on September 12 at El Volcán. The last time they met in Torreón, Santos prevailed 2-1 on February 16, 2020 thanks to a brace from Eduardo “Mudo” Aguirre, while André-Pierre Gignac pulled one back for the visitors.
Santos Laguna (1W 0D 0L) got a gritty win last week against Cruz Azul (0W 0D 1L) at their fortress, Estadio TSM Corona. They’ll face another tough opponent at home, this time welcoming Tigres UANL (1W 0D 0L) to Torreón.
Santos got a goal from Diego Valdés in the 60th minute, but it was their ability to shut down León’s offense that put them in position to win the game. Carlos Acevedo made several fantastic saves, and the back line of Ronaldo Prieto, Matheus Dória, Félix Torres, and Jonathan Díaz showed a maturity and consistency that should instill manager Guillermo Almada with a sense of confidence.
Santos’ defense will have it’s hands full against Tigres. As if Tigres wasn’t already stacked offensively, they added Pumas’ Carlos González during the offseason to give the team an aerial threat to go with the speed of Jesús Dueñas and the sheer wizardry of the incomparable André-Pierre Gignac.
Tigres have a ton of momentum going for them, as they recently won the Concacaf Champions League (and as Gignac famously quipped, “esta pinche copa”) and handled defending champions León (0W 0D 1L) last week. But the trip to Torreón is always difficult for teams, and copa holders or no, Tigres will need to be at their best to come away with points.