America stays top of Liga MX Power Rankings, Tigres drops to No. 4
MEXICO CITY -- Monterrey and America got impressive 5-1 wins, which helped them consolidate their places at the top of the table. Frenchman Jeremy Menez scored his first Liga MX goal, while Erick Gutierrez and Keisuke Honda scored golazos but Pachuca still couldn't find the win. Pumas, led by an inspired Matias Alustiza, defeated Andre-Pierre Gignac's Tigres 2-0.
Here are the Power Rankings for Week 5:
1. CLUB AMERICA (no change)
With only 69 minutes of playing time, Jeremy Menez has his first Liga MX goal. His strike was the best possible way to seal a 5-1 win over Lobos BUAP in which Mexican forward Henry Martin earned player of the game for notching a hat-trick.
2. MONTERREY (+1)
No one thought that after five games, Arturo Alfonso "Poncho" Gonzalez would already have five starts with Rayados under his belt and three goals to his name. It's turning into one of the most impressive Liga MX career comebacks up to date as Monterrey easily cruised to a 5-1 win over Leon.
3. PUMAS UNAM (+2)
After their 2-0 win over Tigres, Pumas are showing they're a different club this season. They're no longer a surprise team in 2018 but a club that is rolling in style. It's also worth noting that their starting XI includes seven players who were raised in their academy.
4. TIGRES UANL (-2)
"My team played like one that didn't know how to play the game," said a serious Ricardo "Tuca" Ferretti after Tigres lost to Pumas. In the second half, Jurgen Damm had multiple opportunities to create danger down the right flank but was unable to capitalize. His frustrating performance went hand in hand with the rest of his team's display.
5. CLUB TIJUANA (+2)
In Torreon, Xolos had zero shots on target but thanks to a brilliant performance by goalkeeper Gibran Lajud, who finished the night with six saves, they took a valuable point back to Tijuana. It's another impressive result.
6. SANTOS LAGUNA (no change)
Santos couldn't break the Xolos defense, which already has three straight away performances without receiving a goal this season. Nevertheless, Santos' positive home streak continues as they've yet to lose a game there.
7. MORELIA (+2)
Once again, Morelia had the advantage of playing a considerable amount of time with an extra man, this time against Pachuca. Even though, it got a valuable 3-2 win this weekend, Morelia still didn't put together a brilliant performance, something manager Roberto Hernandez admitted after the match.
8. PUEBLA (+3)
When Puebla plays at home, it transforms into a dominant force. Against Chivas, it completed 289 accurate passes and had six shots on target. It converted to points, too: the final result was an easy 2-0 win over Matias Almeyda's side.
9. LEON (-5)
To see Leon explode in the way it has in the last two weeks is a big mystery. La Fiera has gone from being a strong candidate to defy the Nuevo Leon elite to a team that seems filled with profound doubt. And they've allowed nine goals allowed in their last two games: ouch.
10. CRUZ AZUL (-2)
After Rafael Baca's sending-off in the 65th minute, Cruz Azul's visit to Atlas got extremely complicated. In the end, La Maquina lost 2-1 and if Cruz Azul aspires to enter this season's Liguilla, it must start winning its home games. That should start happening next weekend when it hosts Necaxa.
11. PACHUCA (-1)
So far in the Clausura, Pachuca has conceded 12 goals, which is an alarming number. This season, its main problems have been that its forwards haven't had the accuracy required in front of goal while its defense is making it easy to get goals on the counter and set-piece plays.
12. TOLUCA (no change)
There's no saying for sure how effective Toluca will be this season. It has accomplished three draws in five of its matches, but next Sunday it hosts Monterrey in a game that will be excellent when it comes to knowing exactly where Los Diablos Rojos stand this season.
13. NECAXA (+1)
Martin Barragan could have been the hero on Saturday night but he missed the penalty that would likely have given Necaxa another league win. It will be interesting to follow closely if Necaxa will be able to build from its Week 4 win over Leon, when they ran out surprising 4-0 winners.
14. CHIVAS (-1)
The problems for Chivas continue because they're currently a team that doesn't play like a team. Perhaps letting Jose Juan "Gallito" Vazquez go wasn't a good idea, especially when the team lacks experienced Mexican players who are able to lead by example and don't get injured often.
15. VERACRUZ (+2)
Finally Veracruz got a win, and it was a massive one at that. Winning against Queretaro gives Los Tiburones Rojos hope that they will be able to avoid the drop, especially after all signs pointed to them being the favorites.
16. QUERETARO (-1)
Queretaro became the first team in the Clausura to lose to Veracruz. Inevitably, the loss is a sign that things aren't going smoothly at Queretaro, who are currently on a three-game streak without scoring a goal.
17. ATLAS (+1)
Center-back Stiven Barreiro got a brace to lead Atlas to its first Clausura win. Ruben Omar Romano's next objective should be to get the midfield duo of Ravel Morrison and Clifford Aboagye clicking so they become the team's coherent attacking engine.
18. LOBOS BUAP (-2)
After five matches played, Lobos have conceded 15 goals. It's a staggering number, and it sets in perspective just how bad their start to the Clausura has been.
Nayib Moran covers Liga MX and the Mexican national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @nayibmoran.