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Match preview: Guadalajara vs. Santos Laguna

Both Chivas and Santos head back from the international break missing players while needing to pick up all three points.

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Dominican Republic v USMNT U-23

Game: Club Deportivo Guadalajara S.A. de C.V. vs. Club Santos Laguna S.A. de C.V.

Date: Sunday, April 4th

Time: 6:00 p.m. Eastern, 5:00 p.m. Central, 3:00 p.m. Pacific, 12:00 a.m. UTC

Venue: Estadio Akron (Zapopan, Jal.)

Referees: REF: Fernando Guerrero Ramírez, AR1: Andres Hernández Delgado, AR2: Eduardo Acosta Orea, 4TH: Daniel Quintero Huitrón, VAR: Eduardo Galvan Basulto, AVAR: Jorge Antonio Pérez Durán

Television: United States - Telemundo, NBC Universo; Mexico - Claro Sports, Afizzionados; Argentina - Claro Sports; Belize - Claro Sports; Bolivia - Claro Sports; Chile - Claro Sports; Colombia - Claro Sports; Costa Rica - Claro Sports; Cuba - Claro Sports; Dominican Republic - Claro Sports; Ecuador - Claro Sports; El Salvador - Claro Sports; Guatemala - Claro Sports; Honduras - Claro Sports; Nicaragua - Claro Sports; Panama - Claro Sports; Paraguay - Claro Sports; Peru - Claro Sports; Puerto Rico - Claro Sports; Uruguay - Claro Sports; Venezuela - Claro Sports

Streaming: fuboTV (Free trial + monthly subscription), Telemundo Deportes App

All-time record: Santos holds the all-time record across all competitions, with 33 wins to Chivas’ 23 while the clubs have drawn 21 times. Strictly in Liga MX play, Santos holds a 28-22 advantage while the clubs have drawn 20. Santos leads 4-1 in Copa MX play, and in the old Interliga Santos won one in 2004 and the sides drew one back in 2005. In more recent history, the last time these teams met in Liga MX play was back on August 2, 2020 when Santos won 2-0 at TSM thanks to goals from Fernando Gorriarán. The last time they met in Guadalajara, Santos won 2-1 way back on August 12, 2018. Santos goals were scored by Matheus Dória (in his second Liga MX match) and Jonathan “Cabecita” Rodríguez while Isaác Brizuela scored the lone goal for Chivas.

Santos Laguna v Leon - Torneo Guard1anes 2021 Liga MX
Santos will be without the services of Fernando Gorriarán, who had to miss his first callup with the Uruguayan National Team with a sports hernia
Photo by Manuel Guadarrama/Getty Images

Santos heads to Guadalajara to face Chivas on the road for the first time in two and a half years in need of three points to keep their place in the Liguilla secure. Chivas on the other hand will need as many points as they can get to try and make the repechaje.

Santos come in having won on the road only once this season, however it was their last time out against Tijuana. They lost their last game at home however, a 2-1 loss to León. Santos was missing Santiago Muñoz and Alan Cervantes due to international duty with the U23 team. This time they’ll be missing Fernando Gorriarán, who will be out with a sports hernia.

It’s hard to understate what Gorriarán brings to the team. A classic eight, “Gorri” is the engine in the middle of the field that makes Santos go. His ability to run continuously and cover a ton of ground will be missed almost as much as his leadership on and off of the field. While Santos have other central midfielders, none quite fit the mold of Gorriarán so Santos will need to adjust.

Chivas v America - Torneo Guard1anes 2021 Liga MX
Miguel Ponce was shown a red card during Chivas’ last match against América, and it’s unclear who will play in his place.
Photo by Alfredo Moya/Jam Media/Getty Images

Chivas have struggled mightily this season, winning just two games and being beaten 3-0 in their last match by archrivals Club América. The calls from fans for the ouster of manager Víctor Manuel Vucetich have grown ever louder this season, and the pressure on him and the team to deliver will be immense.

They’ll need to do it without Miguel Ponce, who picked up a straight red card against América just ten minutes after being subbed into the match. Alejandro Mayorga is reportedly not at 100% after returning from Olympic qualifying, so either Cristian Calderón or Hiram Mier will most likely get the start at left back.

This is a huge game for both clubs. Santos has struggled on the road, and to be able to pick up a win without one of their most important players would be huge for momentum. Chivas meanwhile need some glimmer of hope, and three points against a tough Santos team could be the spark that turns their season around.