A weekend where games featuring Santos Laguna hosting Toluca and the ‘Clasico Regiomontano’ between Monterrey and Tigres UANL would normally take center stage and top billing will be outshone as the game that takes top billing in Liga MX Clausura 2014 Week 5 action is Chivas vs. Cruz Azul. The game to be played on late Saturday afternoon is not only a matchup of two Mexican giants but a battle of two teams who enter the game unbeaten through the first four games.
Chivas enter the clash against the ‘Cementeros’ unbeaten so far in the Clausura 2014 season having drawn three games and winning their lone home game to date which was a 1-0 win over Jaguares de Chiapas. Chivas entered the Clausura season with many questions about how good they were and could be given they were dangerously close to being further dropped to the relegation zone. Under the guide of coach Jose Luis Real, Chivas have so far proven to be a solid, well organized team which has proven key in their good start.
While Chivas have started the season well, the last week saw the first bit of criticism directed at the team as their performance in a 1-1 draw against Atlante left many, including me, feeling like Chivas were just too willing to settle for the draw as opposed to taking a few more risks to try and win the game. Against Cruz Azul, one might be liable to see a Chivas team that is more aggressive in attack given that they will be playing to a full stadium in this home fixture.
Cruz Azul also come into the game on Saturday in fine form as they are co-leaders with Toluca with 10 points but are top of the table given that Cruz Azul have a better goal differential four games into the season. Luis Fernando Tena has come in and done a good job early on of finding some good defensive and attack balance while he appears to be sorting out who plays in the attacking roles. For a fanbase now in its 16th year without a league title, this team just might be the one that finally ends the drought and delivers that much desired title.
For Chivas, players like Israel Castro and Jair Pereira will be going up against as a Cruz Azul team they were a part of here recently. On Cruz Azul, the man who will be of focus is Marco Fabian who was loaned out by Chivas, the club he came up through the youth ranks to the ‘Cementeros’ with but left amidst much controversy and disappointment. The lights will shine bright on him in a game that will clearly garner the most attention this weekend.