Toluca Rises to the Top of Liga MX, Week 3 in Review

Oribe Peralta is with the Mexican Olympic Team, but Santos finds themselves undefeated through the first three weeks of the Apertura 2012. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

In this installment of Ordinary Orange Fan Talks Mexican, we have much to discuss regarding the most recent week in Liga MX. There were quite a few surprises, a couple great comebacks, and of course incredible goals.

Three weeks into the Apertura 2012, Toluca stands tall at the top of the Mexican table with three victories. Powerhouses Tigres and Santos remain undefeated and round out the top three.

The weekend kicked off with current champions Santos hosting Puebla, a team that is struggling and will be fighting to avoid relegation. While Santos came into the match with two victories in their first two games, both came on late goals. Starting striker Oribe Peralta is in London with the Mexican Olympic Team, and Herculez Gomez has benefited with a solid start to the season. Against Puebla, it appeard Santos would dominate La Franja, quickly going up 2-0 in the first 15 minutes. Darwin Quintero got his third goal of the year, while Gomez netted his second. Puebla showed their fight on foreign ground and came back in the second half, scoring twice to finish 2-2.

Meanwhile, Pumas is off to a rocky start after losing to Xolos in Tijuana. Pumas who I picked to be a contneder in this tournament has only won one game against struggling Queretaro. Newly aquired firepower Emanuel Villa and Luis Garcia have yet to find the back of the net and Pumas will need to turn it around fast. Their next four opponents will be tough and their results will surely decide which end of the table they will finish at.

In the last game Friday night, San Luis went up 3-1 on Morelia, only to see Los Monarcas fight back for a 3-3 draw.

Saturday's action kicked off with Hugo Sanchez' Pachuca visiting Queretaro. Pachuca pulled out a 1-0 win, but this hardly seems like the powerhouse team some were predicting.

Cruz Azul and Chivas both continued their struggles to score goals, playing out to a 0-0 draw. Cruz Azul has only two goals through three games, while Chivas has only one. While Guadalajara were able to get a draw, they are winless in their last eight games dating back to the Clausura 2012.

Elsewhere, Monterrey continued their dominance at home with a 2-1 victory over reeling Jaguares, while Altas played to a 0-0 draw at home against Tigres.

On Sunday, Toluca hosted Leon. Both clubs entered the game undefeated and Leon had yet to concede a goal in the Apertura 2012. Lucas Silva got his third goal of the year for Toluca in the 15', while Sinha added a second in the 38'. Moments before the half time whistle, Leon pulled a goal back, but wasn't able to find the equalizer in the second half. Toluca improved to 3-0 on the season and claim the top position through three weeks.

In the final game of the weekend, Atlante shot out in front of Club America with two goals in the first half. Newly aquired striker Esteban Paredes got his second of the season, and Atlante converted a penalty shortly before the half. America would rally by getting on the board in the 48' with a goal by midfielder Rubens Sambueza and eventually get the tying goal with Christian Benitez netting his third of the year.

As I mentioned, Toluca (9 points) leads the Mexican table, followed by Tigres (7), Santos (7), Leon (6), and Tijuana (6) to round out the top five.

In goal scoring, Martin Bravo (Pumas), Christian Benitez (America), Darwin Quintero (Santos), and Lucas Silva (Toluca) all have four goals, while nine others are tied with 2.

If you're interested in following the Copa MX action during the week, there will be a host of games spread across Tuesday and Wednesday. Check out my feature on the Copa MX and let me know what you think about the newly revived competition.

Liga MX action returns next week with a host of games, but here are a couple to keep an eye on. On Friday, we'll see if Leon is truly a contender when they host Santos. Saturday Hugo Sanchez will return to Estadio Hidalgo and try to coach Pachuca to their first home win on the year against Tijuana. Sunday's action brings league leaders Toluca to Mexico City to face the Pumas, who won their last game at home 3-0.

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