Tijuana Xolos 2018 CCL Round of 16 Preview: Xolos Play Motagua In Texas
Game: Motagua vs Tijuana Xolos
When: Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Where: H-E-B Park Edinburg, Texas
Time: 7:00 P.M. PST
TV: Univision Deportes
The Tijuana Xolos will play their first game in the 2018 CONCACAF Champions League this Wednesday as the team faces Honduran club Motagua in Edinburg, Texas.
The game will be played in Texas due to the currently violent and political situation in Honduras.
The match is part of a two-game series in the round of 16 of the competition. The Aztec Canines will be going into this match in good form, currently eighth in the Liga MX with 12 points.
The Border City Dogs are coming off a dominant 4-1 win against Pumas UNAM at home and will be looking to take a comfortable win in this encounter.
The starting lineup has already been leaked by reporter Said Rodriguez. Diego Cocca will be going with the same starting XI that was used against Pumas UNAM, with the exception of Gustavo Bou, due to his injury. Juan Martin Lucero will take Bou’s spot in the starting XI and this team should be able to get a convincing victory.
Los @Xolos apuestan por el mismo 11 que goleó a Pumas en la Liga MX para enfrentar al Motagua en la Concachampions. Claro menos Bou que su lugar lo ocupa Lucero.#Xolos #Tijuana pic.twitter.com/sVu8duFtOQ
— Said Rodríguez (@Saidgol) February 21, 2018
Motagua is currently first in the Honduran league with 21 points, but should struggle in this match.
One of the worries heading into this matchup for Club Tijuana was the long trip to Honduras and the arduous weather in the country. But with the game now in Texas, this should be a pretty difficult game for the Central American side. Motagua has reportedly been studying its opponent, as the assistant coach was present at the Estadio Caliente for the game between Xolos and Queretaro.
The Honduran league is nowhere near as competitive as the Liga MX, but it could still prove to be an intense and physical clash. Teams from Central America tend to be very physical, and players like Damian Musto and Pablo Aguilar could prove to be vital for the Xolos in this encounter.
Player To Watch
The Brazilian winger had the game of his life last weekend in Club Tijuana’s 4-1 win against Pumas UNAM. Goncalves had two goals and an assist in the match and should prove to be an important player in this match for Diego Cocca’s side. His speed is his main attribute and it should cause major problems for Motagua.
The Xoloitzcuintles should be able to pull off a pretty simple win in this game with the much better squad. The prediction for this match is a 4-0 win for Club Tijuana with two goals by Juan Martin Lucero, one by Ignacio Malcorra and another by Mateus Goncalves.
Francisco, 26, Chula Vista/Tijuana. I have been a Padres fan all my life, did most of the series previews and recaps in the Padres’ 2016 season for EVT. Now I focus more on the local soccer scene. Tijuana Xolos, San Diego Loyal, San Diego Wave.