Toluca and Lobos BUAP are improbably chasing playoff berths after impressive wins that saw them rise in this week’s Power Rankings.
León remains entrenched in first place in the Viva Liga MX Power Rankings after notching its 10th straight win to tie the all-time Liga MX record, but there were few big moves after Matchday 13 results.
Lobos BUAP were the big climber – moving up 3 spots – and they matched last season’s win total with a road win at Guadalajara. The modest Puebla team works hard and plays a solid, efficient style that keeps them in games against bigger teams. Against the Chivas, that was enough for a win.
Toluca spanked visiting Monterrey in impressive fashion, but one can’t help but think the Rayados had a letdown after a convincing Concacaf Champions League win midweek. Still, the Diablos must be considered serious playoff contenders.
Without further ado, here are our Power Rankings after Matchday 13:
1. León (-)
Could the Esmeraldas run the table and hit the playoffs on a 14-game winning streak? Here’s their remaining schedule: at Puebla, vs Atlas, at Chivas, vs Pachuca.
2. América (-)
It’s hard to punish the Aguilas for a road loss in which the ref (and the VAR) were such protagonists and three starters were out with short-term injuries.
3. Tigres (+1)
The Tigres are not just biding time until André-Pierre Gignac returns from injury. They are winning and now have a 6-point cushion over third-place Monterrey and seem poised to advance to the Concacaf Champions League Final.
4. Cruz Azul (+1)
The Cementeros are on a 6-game unbeaten streak and have climbed from 14th to 5th in the league standings. They’ll be seeking revenge against América on the weekend.
5. Monterrey (-1)
The Rayados are struggling with inconsistency. After looking so dominant against Sporting KC in the Concacaf Champions League semifinal, they let down against Toluca and paid a stiff price.
6. Pachuca (-)
Normally, earning a point at Santos would earn a bump up, but the Guerreros are sliding down the standings. But credit to the Tuzos for earning a road point, only their third of the season.
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7. Necaxa (-)
The Rayos held their own against the league leaders in León. Brian Fernández missed the equalizer from close range in the game’s final minutes.
8. Tijuana (+1)
The Xolos bounced back from a 4-0 loss to América in the Copa MX to steal a 3-2 win at home against the Aguilas to leap back into the playoff race.
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9. Toluca (+2)
Ricardo La Volpe is working some magic with the Diablos Rojos since taking over after Matchday 8. Toluca has scored 13 goals for “El Bigotón” after scoring only 6 through the first 8 games.
10. Puebla (-2)
The Camoteros slipped out of the top 8 after managing only a tie against visiting Morelia. With León and the Tigres still on their schedule, a playoff berth might be a stretch.
11. Santos (-1)
Coach Salvador Reyes was fired after the Tigres roughed up the Guerreros in a Concacaf Champions League match last week and reaching the playoffs now seems improbable.
12. Atlas (+1)
The Zorros are only 5 points out of a playoff spot after a second straight win, but all four of their remaining foes are currently in the top 8.
13. Lobos BUAP (+3)
A win at Guadalajara must have been very satisfying for coach Paco Palencia especially as his name has been bandied about regarding the vacant Chivas managerial position.
14. Morelia (-)
A decent tie on the road at Puebla, but the Monarcas have only 1 win on the season.
15. UNAM (-3)
Could the Pumas fire their second coach of the season? Most believed this team overachieved last season, but they are more than making up for that in the Clausura. Simply woeful.
16. Querétaro (-1)
The Gallos Blancos are looking forward to a full season under new coach Víctor Manuel Vucetich, but it will require a roster overhaul over the summer.
17. Guadalajara (-)
A disaster. Nuff said.
18. Veracruz (-)
The Tiburones are still looking for their first win of the season.