Cruz Azul vs Monarcas Morelia – 6:00 PM – Univision Deportes
Cruz Azul (10th) lost to Tigres UANL last weekend and were eliminated from the CONCACAF Champions League with a 1-1 draw with Alajuelense in midweek. The end of that game was marred by a brawl, and La Máquina is waiting for the CONCACAF Disciplinary Committee to hand out sanctions. Meanwhile, Cruz Azul will be without both Joao Rojas and Francisco “Maza” Rodríguez in league play after both players earned red cards in the loss to Tigres. Cruz Azul is currently outside the playoff places, but could move as high as 7th with a win here, and Monarcas Morelia (18th) looks vulnerable.
Morelia has just seven points from 13 games and have only won once this season. They’re currently on a three-game winless streak and have shown little sign of improvement, despite changing their coach and their sporting director. While mathematically still alive in the playoff fight, they have no realistic chance of finishing in the top 8 and anything other than a win here would officially eliminate them from playoff contention. Cruz Azul will look for a win that would add to Morelia’s misery and allow them to end a bad week on a high note.
Veracruz vs Jaguares de Chiapas – 6:00 PM – Univision Deportes 2
Veracruz (14th) won last weekend to end a two-game losing streak as well as snap a 276-minute scoreless streak. The Tiburones Rojos are the joint-lowest scorers in the league and have only managed four goals in their six home games to date. With Veracruz still involved in a relegation fight – they’re currently 15th in the Tabla de Cociente – they need to start finding goals and wins sooner rather than later.
Standing in their way on Saturday night will be Jaguares de Chiapas (7th), who are one spot above Veracruz in the relegation standings. Jaguares won last weekend, but lost their last away game. They’ve only won once away from home this season, and that was back in Jornada 7. Nevertheless, they’re in better form than the Tiburones and need a win to stay in playoff positioning as the season winds down.
Monterrey vs Tigres UANL – 8:00 PM – Univision Deportes
The Apertura 2014 edition of the Clásico Regio comes with the two teams involved sitting on very similar records. Monterrey, the hosts, are in 5th place while Tigres UANL are in 4th. The two teams are level on points – 23 – but the Rayados have a game in hand. In terms of recent form, Monterrey lost last weekend to end a three-game unbeaten streak, while Tigres won and are now on a six-game unbeaten streak. Tigres have not lost on the road this season, with three wins and four draws, and have won their last two away games. On the other hand, Monterrey hasn’t lost at home this season, with four wins and two draws, and they’re won three of their last four home games.
The scales are delicately balanced and may tip slightly in Monterrey’s favor since the Rayados are more rested than Tigres, who were active in midweek in the Copa MX quarterfinals, where they defeated Toluca 2-0.
Pachuca vs Leones Negros – 9:06 PM – Telemundo
Pachuca (6th) is coming off a 1-1 draw with Pumas last weekend, as well as a 3-2 loss in the CONCACAF Champions League in midweek (Pachuca had already won the group prior to that game). They’re riding a three-game unbeaten streak in league play and they’ll like their chances of extending that streak against Leones Negros (16th).
The Universidad de Guadalajara are on a three-game unbeaten streak of their own, but they haven’t won on the road all season. They’re also the joint-lowest scoring team in the league with seven goals in thirteen games, while they’re conceded twice that many. The Leones are desperate for points, though, since they’re still in last place in the relegation standings. A win here could bring them level with Puebla and Chivas, depending on other results.
Atlas vs Puebla – 10:00 PM – Univision Deportes
These two teams faced off in the Copa MX just three days ago, with Puebla winning the quarterfinal on penalties after a scoreless ninety minutes. Atlas (3rd) lost last weekend to end a two-game winning streak and they’ll be looking to rebound – and regain some ground at the top of the table – with a win against Puebla (15th). Atlas has only lost at home once this season, and they might be extra motivated against the Poblanos after getting knocked out of the cup by them on Wednesday night.
As for Puebla, they’re currently penultimate in the relegation standings and they could gain some significant ground with a win here. They’re unbeaten in two, but both of those games ended in draws and they really need to start picking up wins. They’ve been reasonably good on the road, though, with one win, three draws, and two losses, and they’ve been having a mini-resurgence under José Luis “Chelís” Sánchez Solá.