In week 17 of the Liga MX Clausura 2017, Leon will host Cruz Azul at the Estadio Leon this Saturday, May 6, 2017 (5:06 PM Pacific). Cruz Azul is mathematically out of the playoff picture while Leon is looking to sneak into La Gran Fiesta with the three points from this encounter.
Leon has had a roller coaster of a campaign under Javier Torrente, looking to sneak into the playoffs as a possible eighth seed. The ‘esmeraldas’ are coming from a 1-1 draw to Chivas of Guadalajara away from home and are undefeated in their last six games. An underrated component of La Fiera in this tournament has been the back line with a very impactful goalkeeper in William Yarbrough.
Elias Hernandez who had been one of Leon’s best players was set to miss the rest of the season but it looks like the Mexican winger could be back for this game. Hernandez had been a very impactful player out on the wings and in front of net getting himself five goals this tournament. Leon should be able to win this game especially at home against a shattered and heartbroken Cruz Azul side.
Cruz Azul will not be in the playoffs for a sixth consecutive tournament and has had a disappointing campaign under Paco Jemez. The Spanish manager has led La Maquina to 18 points in this Clausura and to many hard defeats. The worst result of the competition for Jemez’s men came in last week’s 2-2 draw to Pachuca. The draw was an unbelievable one as a goal by Pachuca’s goalkeeper, Oscar Perez in stoppage time was the deciding factor in the game.
The goal by the former Cruz Azul icon tarnished any hope Los Cementeros had of making the playoffs and added salt to the wounds on an already battered franchise. This game is of some importance to Cruz Azul as next season the Mexico City team will be fighting to evade relegation and need, to sum up as many points as possible. The match should be an entertaining duel between two teams who are capable of playing attractive soccer on the pitch.