Game: Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles de Caliente vs. Querétaro Fútbol Club
Date: Saturday, March 20th
Time: 11:06 p.m. Eastern, 10:06 p.m. Central, 8:06 p.m. Pacific, 3:06 a.m. UTC
Venue: Estadio Caliente (Tijuana, B.C.)
Referees: REF: Fernando Hernandez Gomez, AR1: Jose De Jesus Baños Caballero, AR2: Cesar Cerritos García, 4TH: Brian Omar Gonzalez Veles, VAR: Erick Yair Miranda Galindo, AVAR: Fabrice Paul Plancon-Jallet
Television: United States - FOX Sports 1, FOX Deportes Network; 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: In the all-time series (including the previous iterations of Querétaro) which dates back to the days when both clubs were in the Ascenso MX, Los Gallos Blancos hold a slight edge as Querétaro has won nine to Tijuana’s eleven with the clubs drawing five times. Querétaro also leads in Liga MX play, winning eight to Xolos’ seven and the clubs drawing four times. Los Gallos won twice to Tijuana’s once with the teams drawing one when both were in the Ascenso MX, and the clubs each won once in their meetings in the 2019 Copa MX. The last time the clubs met they tied 2-2 back on November 8, 2020 in Querétaro. Julián Velázquez and Hugo Silviera scored for Gallos while Jordi Cortizo and Vladimir Loroña equalized for Xolos. The last time the clubs played at Estadio Caliente was back on July 27, 2019 when they drew 1-1 with goals from Washington Camacho and Jordan Sierra.
A once promising season now hangs in the balance as Club Tijuana (3W 4D 4L) returns home to host a surprising Gallos Blancos de Querétaro (4W 2D 5L). Tijuana has one point in their last five outings, drawing Rayados (5W 4D 2L) while losing to Tigres (3W 3D 5L), América (8W 1D 2L), Pachuca (3W 4D 5L), and Santos Laguna (6W 3D 2L).
Tijuana had seemingly figured it all out in the beginning of the season, scoring while playing decent defense. In their last five however, they’ve been outscored nine to five, being shut out by both América and Santos. With goalscorers like Mauro Manotas, Fidel Martínez, and Miguel Sansores, they simply must find a way to get these players more into the game and those players have to step up and convert their opportunities. They’ll also be faced with replacing center back Gonzalo Jara, who picked up a red card late in the loss to Santos, and Vladimir Loroña, who is with the Mexico U23 team at Olympic Qualifiers in Guadalajara.
Querétaro is making the most out of what they have. They’ve been getting decent performances in goal from 19 year old Luis Villegas, and Ángel Sepúlveda has six goals on the season, which has him two off of the pace set by Rogelio Funes Mori, Alexis Canelo, and Nicolás Ibáñez.
Querétaro isn’t a flashy team. Their recipe for success has been out-working their opponents and minimizing the amount of mistakes they make. If they can keep their momentum going against Xolos, they have a good chance of making the repechaje. They need to grab as many points as they can however, with tough matches down the stretch including back-to-back matches against Tigres and Santos.