Liga MX: VLMX Power Rankings at the September FIFA Break

TORREON, MEXICO - AUGUST 26: A fan of Cruz Azul cheers for her team during the 7th round match between Santos Laguna and Cruz Azul as part of the Torneo Apertura 2018 Liga MX at Corona Stadium on August 26, 2018 in Torreon, Mexico. (Photo by Natalia Perales/Getty Images)
TORREON, MEXICO - AUGUST 26: A fan of Cruz Azul cheers for her team during the 7th round match between Santos Laguna and Cruz Azul as part of the Torneo Apertura 2018 Liga MX at Corona Stadium on August 26, 2018 in Torreon, Mexico. (Photo by Natalia Perales/Getty Images) /

With Liga MX stepping aside for the FIFA international break, Jornada 8 proved to be a wild one for a few clubs. Our rankings reflect it.

Liga MX Jornada 8 saw a huge upset of Monterrey, Atlas score its first goal of the Apertura, and Pumas get back in the win column. When you look at the table, things don’t look all that crazy, but a closer look shows a league that has about as much parody as any in the world.

There are nine matches left for Liga MX clubs. In the push to the Liguilla, this is who we reckon are the strongest, and weakest, clubs.

1. Cruz Azul (+0)
Luis Ramos (LR): Cruz Azul keep rolling with ease. No real tough match yet. Or are they just good enough that every match looks easy for them?
Tom Freeman-Eves (TFE): La Maquina roles on. Solid in the back and ruthless going forward.

2. Santos Laguna (+0)
Garett Kerber (GK): Despite the loss to Toluca, Furch scored again and continues his great 2018 Apertura. I still expect this team to finish top 4 and since Monterrey lost, I feel comfortable keeping them at 2nd in the power rankings.
Tom Buckley (TB): The Santos offense is just too good to punish them for a tough road loss.

3. Club America (+1)
LR: A much-needed win for America to help them gain ground on the top 3 spots in the table.
GK: No cure for a slump like Lobos the last couple years. I still don’t feel Piojo is putting Las Aguilas in the best possible position tactically, but getting into Liguilla is the main thing, I suppose.

4. Monterrey (-1)
TFE: Frustrating, this Rayados team has outstanding potential that it’s simply not living up to.
TB: Loss to Puebla could indicate chemistry issues, just not playing well. 

5. Toluca ( +2)
GK: Toluca is slowly looking more like the contender we expected at the beginning of the year. Beating Santos at home was big for confidence in this team.
TFE: A big win at home to the champions and the return of Sambueza are a real boost for Toluca’s post-season hopes

6. Queretaro (+5)
GK: The 4-1 dismantling of Monarcas was certainly a surprise. Camilo Sanvezzo has been excellent.
TB: Coach Rafa Puente has Gallos Blancos playing well, especially on the road.

7. Tigres (+1)
TFE: Despite some lackluster performances, Tigres still possess the most frightening front-line in Liga MX. Can’t place them too low here.
GK: You gave up the first goal of the year to Atlas….how could you!? All jokes aside, Tigres haven’t been able to get it together this Apertura and now are going to be without TucaFerretti until Mexico finds a full-time head coach.

8. Monarcas (-3)
TB: Completely undressed by a poised Querétaro team.
TFE: Destroyed this week by the resurgent Queretaro. Loads of potential but things just aren’t clicking right now.

9. Pumas (+0)
TB: Despite good road win over León, depth of roster a concern.
TFE: Despite a win against Leon this week, Pumas early start is looking more and more like it was just a flash in the pan. Uninspiring.

10. Leon (-4)
GK: Quite a let down against Pumas. I don’t want to ding them too much for it, but there were enough other teams that impressed. The fall for the loss, drop like a rock because of the play of other clubs.
TB: Must be more disciplined in middle of pitch to maintain postseason hopes.

10. Pachuca (+2)
LR: Pachuca keep on winning and it seems like they just keep getting better and better every week..
TB: Pachuca continues to find good players at its academy; Pablo López the latest.
TFE: Tuzos find themselves in excellent form after picking up 10 pts in 4 games but, ultimately I think they’ve left themselves with too much to do to make the top 8.

12. Chivas (-2)
GK: Told ya.
TFE: Guadalajara’s week in the limelight is now just a distant memory and this side simply don’t look good enough to compete with the top teams right now.

13. Puebla (+1)
GK: Nice win. Does it say more about Monterrey that Puebla won over the weekend? Maybe. Puebla did beat Toluca in their first match of the Apertura, though. Maybe this is Puebla when they put it all together?
TB: Surprising win over Monterrey has raised eyebrows, but we need to see more.

14. Club Tijuana (+1)
TFE: Fortress Estadio Caliente provides a nice distraction every other game but they’re just not capable of winning away.
TB: Xolos must hope that win over Necaxa provides a boost, or season ends early.

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15. Necaxa (-2)
TB: Rayos offense has begun to misfire and with their defense, that’s gonna hurt.
GK: For all their defensive woes, the offense kept them alive. Now the offense is stalling and Cruz Azul and Toluca are coming up in the schedule…oh boy.

16. Veracruz (+0)
GK: Oh Tiburones! Poor, poor Tiburones. I think you’re better than Lobos and Atlas, but there is a great amount of hesitation there. The fact that I had some tiny thought you might draw with Cruz Azul gives you the boost you need.
TB: Put up a good fight against unbeaten Cruz Azul, but simply overmatched.

17. Lobos (+0)
GK: Lobos may not be able to rely on Atlas being worse than them much longer. What can they do about it at this point?
TFE: The only saving grace for Lobos is that they’re not as bad as Atlas.

18. Atlas (+0)
LR: Well…. They scored a goal.