Toluca bowed out of the Liguilla race as the Diablos Rojos suffered a 2-1 defeat to Santos Laguna in their final game of the regular season.
Hernan Cristante’s side went into this game needing a win to seal their place in the Liguilla, but the game was tilted in Santos Laguna’s favor in the 27th minute when Carlos Izquierdoz headed home from a Walter Sandoval corner.
The game saw Toluca improve in the second half, and their best chance of equalizing fell to Pablo Barrientos when he sent a right-footed shot just wide of Agustin Marchesin’s goal.
And Santos Laguna made the hosts pay when Jonathan Rodriguez tapped home from a breakaway to double their lead.
In the 88th minute, Maikon Leite pulled a goal back for the Diablos Rojos, but all hope looked lost as the final whistle meant Toluca were eliminated from Liguilla contention.
The result meant good news for Club Leon, who sealed their place in the quarterfinals with Toluca’s defeat.
Toluca were made sweat, but the Diablos Rojos left it late to beat Queretaro 3-2 at the Estadio La Corregidora to move one step closer to clinching a place in the Liguilla.
Queretaro, who defeated Chivas during the midweek to win the Copa MX Apertura 2016 title, went down early after Fernando Uribe gave the visitors a deserved lead when he latched on to a Pablo Barrientos through ball to chip Tiago Volpi for the 1-0.
Uribe then grabbed his second at the stroke of halftime, heading in a Gerardo Flores cross.
But the second half was much different, and Camilo Sanvezzo pulled a goal back early into the second period when he finished behind Alfredo Talavera for Queretaro’s first.
Sanvezzo would score a second, with four minutes to go in the game, when he took advantage of a Talavera howler to level things at two goals.
There would be time for a winner, and just moments later, Gerardo Flores appeared unmarked to head home an emphatic winner for Toluca and eliminate Queretaro from Liguilla contention.
Next, Toluca will look to finish the job against a struggling Santos Laguna side, while Queretaro will visit Tigres.
Xolos de Tijuana inflicted Toluca their first home defeat of the season with a 1-0 win at the Estadio Universitario Alberto “Chivo” Córdoba on Sunday.
Tijuana started the match sitting second in the league table and already qualified to the Liguilla. Toluca, on the other hand, needed a win to move sixth in the league table.
Two minutes in, Milton Caraglio came close with a header and moments later Dayro Moreno forced a save from Alfredo Talavera.
After a scoreless first half, Toluca came closest when “Pitu” Barrientos struck the post with a left footed shot from outside the box.
In the 72nd minute, an error from Toluca led to a Milton Caraglio low cross for Gabriel Hauche, who fired in with just Talavera to beat to give Xolos the breakthrough.
Tijuana nearly double the lead in the closing stages of the game when Talavera was forced to a brilliant save from an Ignacio Malcorra chip.
With Xolos looking likely to emerge as winners, Toluca defender Oscar Rojas was given his marching orders. At the final whistle, Tijuana had no problem holding on to earn all three points in Toluca.
The win was enough to move Tijuana back to the top of the league table, and next they host their final regular season game when they take on Tigres at the Estadio Caliente. Meanwhile, Toluca will look to bounce back against Queretaro.
— LIGA Bancomer MX (@LIGABancomerMX) October 30, 2016
Dorlan Pabon fired an equalizer as Monterrey and Toluca shared a 1-1 draw at the Estadio BBVA Bancomer on Saturday.
Pablo “Pitu” Barrientos gave the visitors the lead at the half-hour mark when he fired in a left-footed strike following a Jonathan Orozco save.
Monterrey improved after conceding, and Dorlan Pabon brought the Rayados back on leveled terms at the stroke of halftime. The Colombian forward sent a shot through Alfredo Talavera to put things at 1-1 at the break.
The hosts had the better of a combative second half and Rogelio Funes Mori should have given Monterrey the lead on two ocassions. First, the former Benfica man forced a brilliant save from Talavera in the 69th minute before angling a shot just wide moments later.
At the end, both teams settled for a share of the spoils as the match ended in a 1-1 draw.
The result leaves Monterrey in a precarious position in the table, with 18 points in 14 matches and outside of a Liguilla spot.
Next, the Rayados will visit arch-rivals Tigres in the Clasico Regio, while Toluca will host league leaders Xolos de Tijuana.
Fernando Uribe scored late to give Toluca a 2-1 win over Pumas UNAM at the Estadio Universitario Alberto “Chivo” Córdoba on Sunday.
Francisco Palencia’s men had given Toluca a tough time during most of the game and will probably feel they should have taken at least a point from this game.
A Paulo da Sila own goal had given the Universitarios the lead in the 20th minute after a couple half chances from Pumas.
Toluca had plenty of time to find and equalizer and got it early in the second half. Enrique Triverio appeared with plenty of space to head home from an Erbin Trejo corner to level the score at 1-1.
The Diablos Rojos would then go on to claim a fortunate win in the 86th minute. Fernando Uribe latched on to an Osvaldo Gonzalez cross. Pumas defender Gerardo Alcoba tripped, which left Uribe with an all to easy effort and hand Toluca the three points.
The win puts Toluca back in a Liguilla place and next will visit Monterrey at the Estadio BBVA Bancomer. Meanwhile, Pumas UNAM will host midweek action for the CONCACAF Champions League.