Leones Negros move up Power Rankings after another big upset
The obvious change in this week's Liga MX power rankings is the significant rise of Leones Negros. The newly-promoted squad from last year defeated America and Tigres in its last two league games.
With Veracruz continuing to find success and Leones Negros pushing for recent wins, the relegation battle has now focused on Chivas and Puebla -- two teams who will face-off this Saturday.
At the top of the rankings, Club Tijuana still appear to be the in-form team, while others like Cruz Azul and Leon have shown a slight dip in their performances.
Here are the updated Liga MX power rankings for the 2015 Clausura:
1. Club Tijuana (no change)
Argentine winger Gabriel Hauche once again stepped up for Club Tijuana and scored the last second equalizer in the 1-1 away tie against Santos on Saturday. Santos had an excellent opportunity immediately afterwards, but was stopped by Tijuana goalkeeper Cirilo Saucedo. Another dramatic finish in a stellar season for Daniel Guzmán's side.
2. Veracruz (no change)
Veracruz narrowly surpassed Leon with a 1-0 win and remain as the only undefeated team in the Liga MX. The club has only allowed four goals this season and should have no trouble avoiding relegation.
3. Puebla (+1)
With goals from Colombian Luis Gabriel Rey and Argentine Facundo Erpen, Puebla nearly had an away victory against Chiapas last Saturday. The 2-2 draw against Chiapas pushed Puebla's current unbeaten streak to four games this season.
4. America (+1)
Despite the fact that America gained a point away from home in the 0-0 draw against Pachuca, there are still worrying signs from the squad. Las Aguilas have struggled in their recent matches and only scored one goal in their last three league games.
5. Club Universidad de Guadalajara(+9)
The past two weeks have seen two massive victories against two giant Liga MX squads for Leones Negros. The small Guadalajara-based team defeated Club America 1-0 in the Estadio Azteca first and then followed up by gaining a crucial 2-1 win against Tigres on Sunday. Anything seems possible for this team.
6. Cruz Azul (no change)
A strong defense can't solve all problems. Even with forward Roque Santa Cruz back in action, Cruz Azul's attacking efforts were sluggish against Atlas in the 1-1 draw at the Estadio Azul. Cruz Azul has now gone three league games without a win.
7. Pachuca (no change)
Pachuca has now failed to secure a win in their last two league matches, but should be forgiven when one considers that the opponents were America (a 0-0 draw on Saturday) and Club Tijuana (a 3-2 loss on Feb. 28). Pachuca's next opponents won't be any easier; the club travels to face Tigres at the Estadio Universitario in Monterrey this weekend.
8. Atlas (+1)
Atlas is struggling to find its feet this Clausura but gained an important point against Cruz Azul over the weekend. Striker Martin Barragan leads the team with three goals this season but hasn't scored since January.
9. Monterrey (+7)
Thanks to Antonio Mohamed and Colombian midfielder Edwin Cardona, Monterrey is starting to show signs of life. Cardona had a part in all three goals for the club in the 3-2 victory over Toluca on Saturday.
10. Chivas (-7)
Luck may have had some part in the situation, but Queretaro secured a 1-0 win through a last minute golazo from midfielder Mario Osuna. With Leones Negros flying high, Chivas must start gaining points in order to avoid relegation.
11. Leon (-3)
Leon fell apart last Friday and was given three red cards in the 1-0 loss to Veracruz. The club will be without Juan Ignacio Gonzalez, Carlos Pena, and Jose Juan Vazquez in the next match against Cruz Azul.
12. Chiapas (no change)
Chiapas salvaged a point at home thanks to a late equalizer from Argentine Vicente Matias Vuoso in the 89th minute. The club kept its unbeaten streak at home alive, but has only one win in its last four league games.
13. Tigres (-3)
Tigres' defense was overrun by Leones Negros during the 2-1 loss on Sunday. If they want to be anywhere near the form that they had during the last Apertura, they need to start scoring more goals. The club has scored only eight so far this Clausura.
14. Toluca (-2)
The 3-2 loss to Monterrey was the club's second in their last three games. Toluca had a decent start to the Clausura but has now only gained one win in the last five league games.
15. Santos Laguna (-2)
Santos was just minutes away from giving Tijuana its second loss of the season but stumbled in the last few minutes of the game. A late attempt was blocked by Saucedo and solidified the 1-1 draw. Santos is now four league games without a win.
16. Pumas (+1)
Finding a win against Morelia wasn't a daunting task, but at this point Pumas need any boost in morale that's available. Pumas defeated Morelia 2-1 at home in Mexico City and collected the squad's first league victory since January of this year.
17. Queretaro (+1)
Queretaro's prayers were answered in the dying minutes of the match against Chivas. Osuna's goal in the 89th minute ended a three-game losing streak for the club. Perhaps new coach Victor Manuel Vucetich, or "King Midas," has already had a fortuitous influence on the team.
18. Morelia (-3)
Morelia's loss was the fifth of the season and the third in in the last five games. The side should've done better against a vulnerable Pumas side and could soon find itself in relegation danger next year if these trends continue.
Cesar Hernandez covers Liga MX and the Mexican national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @cesarhfutbol.