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Match preview: Puebla F.C. vs. Santos Laguna

After a statement win against Tijuana, Santos heads to Puebla to face Los Larcaboys.

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General view of Cuauhtemoc Stadium during the 8th round match between Puebla and FC Juarez as part of the Torneo Grita Mexico C22 Liga MX at Cuauhtemoc Stadium on March 1, 2022 in Puebla, Mexico. Photo by Agustin Cuevas/Getty Images

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

Date: Friday, March 18th

Time: 11:00 p.m. Eastern, 10:00 p.m. Central, 8:00 p.m. Pacific, 3:00 a.m. UTC

Venue: Estadio Cuauhtémoc (Puebla de Zaragoza, Pue.)

Referees: REF: Fernando Guerrero Ramírez, AR1: Karen Janett Díaz Medina, AR2: Jorge Antonio Sánchez Espinoza, 4TH: Diego Montaño Robles, VAR: Erick Yair Miranda Galindo, AVAR: Oscar Macías Romo

Television: United States - TUDN; Mexico - ESPN, TV Azteca

Streaming: fuboTV (Subscription), TUDN En Vivo

All-time record: Santos holds the all time record across all competitions, winning 28 to Puebla’s 16 with 24 draws. The only time the clubs have met outside of Liga MX play was a wild win by Santos in the 2014 Apertura Copa MX Final in penalties. The last time the clubs met, the clubs played to a 1-1 draw on September 19th, getting goals from Alessio Da Cruz and Emanuel Gularte. The last time they met in Puebla in the regular season, Santos won 2-0 back on October 2, 2020 thanks to goals from Julio Furch and David Andrade.

Harold Preciado of Santos celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the 10th round match between Santos Laguna and Club Tijuana as part of the Torneo Grita Mexico C22 Liga MX at Corona Stadium on March 13, 2022 in Torreon, Mexico.      Mark image as sensitive
Harold Preciado’s two goals against Xolos give him five on the season, tied for third best in the league.
Photo by Armando Marin/Jam Media/Getty Images

After struggling mightily in the beginning of the season, Santos has won three of their last four games and have looked like a more complete team. They’ll be put to the test tomorrow night when they head to Puebla to face Los Larcaboys at Estadio Cuauhtémoc. The stadium will be at a maximum of 75% capacity, with new security and health measures being rolled out in the wake of the riots that marred the Querétaro vs. Atlas match two weeks ago.

Santos put a 4-0 beating on Tijuana in their last time out, getting a brace from Harold Preciado and goals from Fernando Gorriarán and Leo Suárez. They looked competent, never allowing Tijuana much in the way of offensive chances despite captain and defensive talisman Matheus Dória serving a red card suspension from the prior match against Chivas.

Dória will be back in the lineup for Santos, who only count Jonathan Díaz, Ayrton Preciado, and Ignacio Jeraldino as injured and rehabilitating.

Fernando Aristeguieta of Puebla reacts during the 10th round match between Atletico San Luis and Puebla as part of the Torneo Grita Mexico C22 Liga MX at Estadio Alfonso Lastras on March 13, 2022 in San Luis Potosi, Mexico.
Fernando Aristeguieta is having a career year, scoring a career high five goals in just nine games so far this season.
Photo by Leopoldo Smith/Getty Images

Puebla meanwhile comes into the match in second place in the league, behind only former Santos boss Guillermo Almada and Pachuca, although Pachuca have a game in hand. Puebla manager Nicolás Larcamón has his team playing well, although they lost their first game last week against Club Atlético de San Luis.

Puebla still are third in goals scored in the league with 18 and fourth in goals conceded with just nine. Along with Pachuca, they are the only clubs in the top six of both categories. They’ve been getting a great season out of Fernando Aristeguieta, who is tied with Harold Preciado for third in the league with five goals.

Santos has improved greatly after parting ways with Pedro Caixinha and handing the reins over to Eduardo Fentanes. They however have lost three of five on the road this season and despite their slip against San Luis, Puebla hasn’t lost at home. They have however only taken nine out of a possible 15 points in their building, so it should be an entertaining and intriguing match.