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Liga MX season in a sentence: How all 18 teams look heading into Apertura

Santos Laguna come in as defending champions but will face a tough chasing field if they're to repeat.
Santos Laguna come in as defending champions but will face a tough chasing field if they're to repeat.

With the World Cup done and dusted, there are now only a few days for Mexican soccer fans to prepare for the start of the 2018 Apertura tournament. For those who don't have much time to read through countless articles before the season kicks off Friday, we've provided a one-sentence preview for all 18 Liga MX teams.

ATLAS (last season: 15th place)
With several roster changes -- including the retirement and immediate front-office hiring of Rafael Marquez -- it's now up to young manager Gerardo Espinoza to unify and reawaken them.

CLUB AMERICA (last season: semifinalist)
Although there's an intriguing and enticing amount of talent in the squad led by Miguel Herrera, worries have recently escalated after injuries to Jeremy Menez and Cecilio Dominguez.

CLUB TIJUANA (last season: semifinalist)
Despite the fact that Xolos won't be the most entertaining team in the league, their pragmatic and defensive approach might be enough to help them sneak into the top eight once again.

CHIVAS (last season: 17th place)
Following the transfer of Rodolfo Pizarro to Monterrey and the exit of Matias Almeyda, it's unclear whether Chivas can thrive in the Apertura or December's Club World Cup.

CRUZ AZUL (last season: 12th place)
After helping bring in a number of exciting roster additions, the Ricardo Pelaez era as Cruz Azul's sporting director appears highly promising.

LEON (last season: 13th place)
Regardless of Landon Donovan's early departure, the bigger question is whether new signings Rodolfo Cota and William Tesillo will help halt the worrisome tally of goals allowed in 2018.

LOBOS BUAP (last season: 18th place)
Once set to be relegated and then eventually saved due to controversial Liga MX regulations, Lobos BUAP now have much to prove under new manager Francisco Palencia.

MONTERREY (last season: quarterfinalist)
Failing to clinch the Supercopa MX title on Sunday wasn't exactly an ideal start, and yet there's still an immense amount to fear about one of the very best squads in the first division.

MORELIA (last season: quarterfinalist)
Morelia's success likely depends on whether another attacking player can fill the massive cleats of former striker Raul Ruidiaz and also whether the team can adjust without him.

NECAXA (last season: 11th place)
Is the 1-0 Supercopa MX win over Monterrey simply a flash in the pan or a sign of things to come for the squad that exceeded expectations over the weekend?

PACHUCA (last season: ninth place)
Although there is much skepticism regarding Pako Ayestaran as Diego Alonso's replacement, Los Tuzos remain a side that could be a threat.

PUEBLA  (last season: 10th place)
Keep an eye on the unassuming Puebla team that was the most underrated Liga MX club last season ... before stumbling to five defeats in a row.

PUMAS UNAM (last season: quarterfinalist)
After Nico Castillo's move to Benfica, Pumas will desperately need another striker to immediately take charge and dominate the attack.

QUERETARO  (last season: 14th place)
With Rafael Puente Jr. as manager and the highly talented goalkeeper Tiago Volpi, it wouldn't be much of a shock if Puente's proactive style of play pushes Los Gallos Blancos into the playoffs.

SANTOS LAGUNA (last season: champion)
If Los Guerreros wish to retain their title, they'll need to shake off the defensive rust seen in Sunday's 4-0 loss to Tigres in the Campeon de Campeones battle.

TIGRES UANL (last season: quarterfinalist)
Fans need to take a recent 4-0 win with a grain of salt, but that said, the latest victory highlighted the mammoth attacking strength Tigres have when they are firing on all cylinders.

TOLUCA (last season: runner-up)
Toluca fans will miss the presence of Fernando Uribe, but the addition of William da Silva and the return of Enrique Triverio should lead Los Diablos Rojos to another deep playoff run.

VERACRUZ (last season: 16th place)
Unfortunately for Veracruz supporters, all of the summer roster modifications won't change the club's dismal and dreary outlook.

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