WOODY BAUM - Friday, March 26, 2010
Marco Vidal and Indios will try to take another step closer to safety, while Herculez Gomez and Puebla are playing for their head coach's job this weekend.
Indios – Atlante
Indios, who just ended the longest winless streak in the history of Mexico's top flight, have the chance turn their season around and avoid relegation if they are able to win away on Saturday when they visit Atlante in Cancun.
Atlante coming off a win of their own still maintain a possibility of a Liguilla berth thanks to their win last weekend.
Marco Vidal will look to start again, as he hopes to contribute to an improbable ascension from the relegation zone. Javier Malagueño will be out injured for Indios while Atlante will have their entire squad available.
Tigres – Toluca
Edgar Castillo and Tigres will look to end its winless streak at home this weekend while Toluca will attempt to regain some momentum this Saturday in Monterrey.
Tigres are coming off an embarrassing 4-0 loss against Cruz Azul and will need to show some positive results at home as their fans have been becoming impatient for a turnaround. Their season has been marked by inconsistency and the squad, as well as their head coach are under increasing pressure.
Toluca is currently in fourth place in their group and will need the win in order to begin their climb to second place, as they currently sit behind Atlas and Querétaro.
Castillo should get the start again, as he has started almost every game this tournament. However, his offensive contributions will be necessary if Tigres are to defeat a potent Toluca offense led by Sinha.
Lucas Lobos, Everton Cardoso and Antonio Sancho will be unavailable for Tigres through injury, while Jose Manuel Cruzalta will also be out for Toluca.
Pachuca – Morelia
Pachuca will hope to return to their winning ways this Saturday when they host Morelia in the Estadio Hidalgo.
Pachuca, coming off an impressive game against America last week, currently sit six points behind Morelia, who are in second place in the group. To not win this weekend would essentially eliminate Pachuca from playoff contention.
Pachuca showed glimpses of the quality soccer that they are known for last weekend, and Francisco Torres will again look to take part in the offensive build up as they take on a dangerous Morelia squad.
Miguel Sabah has been dangerous all season in leading the Morelia attack, and Pachuca will need to maintain possession in order to get the result.
Paul Aguilar is suspended and Damien Alvarez is injured meaning both will be unavailable for Pachuca. While Aldo Leao is out for Morelia through injury.
Puebla – America
It's do or die this Sunday for Puebla head coach Jose Sanchez Sola, who has stated that if Puebla did not win against America, he would resign. It will be a herculean task for Sola to maintain his job, as he has not won against America in over 13 years.
Puebla are coming off a disappointing loss to Santos last weekend, and their sub-par season has raised doubts about whether Sola is the correct man for the job.
Puebla will need the continued offensive contributions of ex-MLS players Herculez Gomez and Carlos Ruiz if they are to have any chance of winning. Furtermore, Los Camoteros will also need big contributions from its defense in order to stop the league leading America offense.
Fernando Lopez is the only player out for America due to suspension. Alejandro Acosta and Manuel Mondragon are both suspended for Puebla, while Jorge Villalpando, Roberto Juarez and Joaquin Velazquez are all sidelined with injury.
Sammy Ochoa, who did not play for Estudiantes last week, will look to get back on the field this Friday against Cruz Azul.