Game: Xolos Femenil vs Pumas UNAM
When: Monday, March 5, 2018
Where: Estadio Caliente, Tijuana, Mexico
Time: 7:00 P.M. PST
Watch Live Online: Xolos Facebook Live
The Xolos women’s team finally won in the Liga MX Femenil Clausura 2018.
It took eight games but the border city team now has a “W” on its record this season. The Xoloitzcuintles defeated Monarcas Morelia 1-0 away from home last week in what was a thrilling matchup. Arlina Montes scored her first-career Liga MX Femenil goal and goalkeeper Itzel Gonzalez stopped a penalty in stoppage time to secure the three points. This game and the 1-1 tie against Veracruz in Week 7 at the Estadio Caliente have been Xolos Femenil’s best performances this season.
Head coach Andrea Rodebaugh has made some key changes to her lineup that have clearly impacted the team’s performance. The Mexican manager used very young players in the first few games, but it hadn’t really produced results for the Xolos. There are clearly some talented girls on Club Tijuana, like Layzha Garcia and Valentina Oviedo, who are both just 15 years old. But the results just weren’t there with a younger starting lineup on the field. Rodebaugh is now using more experienced players in her starting 11, like Arlina Montes, Patricia Gutierrez, and Rosa Aguiar.
These adjustments have really helped Xolos Femenil, especially in the attack, as there seems to be more confidence instilled in these more experienced players. The border city team is still far from a playoff spot, with just five points, but is also now the 13th best team in the league after being dead last just a few weeks ago. The Xolos are on the rise, but will have an extremely tough task at the Estadio Caliente on Monday night.
Pumas UNAM is one of the best teams in the Liga MX Femenil, currently third in Group 1 of the tournament with 14 points.
The Mexico City team is chasing Club America and Toluca, who are the top two teams in the group with 20 points each. Las Capitalinas have won two of their last three games and are coming off a 3-0 win against Cruz Azul. The team is led by one of the more respected coaches in the league in Ileana Davila, and has some very talented players. The defense is Pumas’ strong suit as it has allowed a league-low four goals this season. The backline is led by captain Deneva Cagigas, who is one of the best and more precise defenders in the league. Cagigas can also provide the occasional shot and is very good at crosses as well.
Other notable players include Ana Paola Lopez and Ana Karen Lopez, who are the joint top scorers on the team with three goals each. The team is very dangerous on set-pieces and this could cause some major problems to this Xolos Femenil team. The two sides already played each other earlier in the season in Mexico City and Pumas defeated Xolos 3-0 quite comfortably. It is hard to imagine that Xolos Femenil will get the win on Monday night, even with the home-field advantage at the Estadio Caliente. EVT predicts a 2-1 win for Pumas UNAM in what should be an intense and exciting match in Tijuana.