Game: Tijuana Xolos vs Leon
Where: Estadio Caliente, Tijuana, México
When: Friday, April 21, 2022
Time: 8:15 p.m. PST
TV: Fox Sports 1, Fox Deportes
The Tijuana Xolos will host Leon at the Estadio Caliente for their final home game of the 2023 Liga MX Clausura regular season this Friday, April 21. This will also be the Aztec Canine’s penultimate game of the Clausura regular season, as this is another must-win game for the border city team.
While the next season seems promising, with several potential new signings by Miguel Herrera and company, it is still possible to make the playoffs this season for Club Tijuana. This is unlikely with all of the teams still in the mix for a top-12 spot, but the Border City Dogs will stay in the hunt with a win on Friday night.
The Xoloitzcuintles are coming off a rare away win as Xolos bested Mazatlan 2-1 away from home with two goals from the penalty spot by Alexis Canelo. The win was just Tijuana’s third win of the campaign, and it was also the first road victory of the year. Xolos’ best performances of the season have been at home, as the home-field advantage is a key factor to Friday night’s game.
This is a very tough matchup for the Aztec Canines, as Leon is currently in fifth place with 26 points on the season. However, Los Esmeraldas are on a three-game winless streak in all competitions and are coming off a 2-0 home loss to Chivas.
Leon does have a superior squad to Club Tijuana with players like Rodolfo Cota, Victor Davila, and Angel Mena. The biggest difference between the two teams is the defense, as Leon has only allowed 13 goals this season, while Xolos has allowed 24. Those 13 goals allowed are tied for the lowest in the Liga MX this season, which is impressive given that Nicolas Larcamon has had to deal with a couple of key injuries to his backline.
Players to watch
Canelo has been the best player for Club Tijuana this season and is coming off a game where his two goals led directly to the border city team earning three points away from home. Canelo provides a lot of valuable qualities to Miguel Herrera’s attack and will be looking to improve as the team improves heading into next season.
Davila has led Leon’s attack this season with five goals scored and two assists. The Chilean forward is a Liga MX veteran and has plenty of experience playing in the Mexican league under his belt. Davila has a powerful strike and can be a menace to any Liga MX backline when he is in form, as the Xolos defense will need to be careful with the South American striker on Friday night.
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.