Santos Laguna aims to make Puebla its fourth straight victim when the two teams tangle at Estadio Corona Sunday.
Santos Laguna is the only Liga MX team with 3 wins to start the season. Two of their wins were dominating performances while last week’s victory at Atlas was difficult only because they were hurt by lousy refereeing.
After two straight 3-0 wins (the Guerreros crushed the Chivas 3-0 win in their opener, then manhandled Juarez by the same 3-0 score), they looked to be cruising to an easy win against Atlas when the ref ignored an obvious penalty against Atlas, then granted a dubious penalty to the Zorros that made for a tense finale to the match though Santos won 2-1.
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Santos is proving to have a very solid defense, enhanced by the seamless transition being made by Hugo Rodriguez and Carlos Orrantia, the two new members of the back four. And goalie Jonathan Orozco is as good as ever.
The Santos offense is led by left winger Brian Lozano who leads the league with 4 goals and also has 2 assists. Santos went 269 minutes before conceding their first goal of the season and that came on a questionable penalty.
For now, the Guerreros are in sole possession of first place with 9 points and a stellar +7 goal differential (8 goals scored, 1 goal conceded).
Puebla coach Jose Luis Sanchez Sola (“Chelis”) must figure out how to right the ship after his team’s slow start. His task will be that much harder against Santos due to the absence of the Camoteros’ best player, Lucas Cavallini, who will be serving a red-card suspension.
Puebla has only played twice thus far (the club had a Week 2 bye), but has not looked strong. Chelis watched his team lose decisively to the Xolos on Matchday 1 (a 3-1 road loss) before settling for a 1-1 tie against Guadalajara last week. Granted, Puebla probably deserved to beat the Chivas, but coulda, woulda shoulda doesn’t earn any extra points.
The Camoteros are in 16th place with 1 point and they will likely play even more conservatively than usual in an effort to hold off the Santos juggernaut. It will be shocking if Puebla pulls out a road win. A point would be considered a victory here.
It will take a lot of misdirection for “Chelis” to pull a rabbit out his hat and steal a win at the Estadio Corona. Facing an undefeated team without your best player is a daunting task for any coach this side of Bill Belichick. Santos has looked so good (a 2-1 midweek loss to the Chivas in the Copa MX notwithstanding) that I see no reason that they won’t roll over the Camoteros with relative ease.