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5 reasons to follow Liga MX's playoffs

Five reasons why you shouldn't miss Liga MX's playoffs

November 22, 2017 By Oscar Rojas
This winter will get a lot warmer once these teams get in the pitch to fight for the Apertura 2017 title.

The last stage of the Apertura 2017 tournament kicks off tonight, and eight teams will be gunning to become Liga MX's ruler, succeeding Chivas at the throne.

Monterrey, Tigres, América, Morelia, Toluca, Cruz Azul, León and Atlas will be the teams fighting for the title. All of these teams have solid arguments to try and win one more title, but we'll leave you with five reasons why the Liga MX playoffs are a must-watch for fans around the world.

1. A classical rivalry will hand a semi-final ticket

The tie where América and Cruz Azul will see two bitter rivals locking horns in one of the most heated rivalries between two Mexico City-based teams. These teams have a lot of pedigree in the Mexican top flight, facing each other in three title-deciding ties, with one of them ending in epic fashion thanks to a goal by América's goalkeeper.

Goalkeeper Moises Muñoz (in gray) scored a goal during stoppage time to send the Clausura 2013 final to extra time. Eventually, Las Águilas prevailed to win their 11th title in history.

2. The presence of Liga MX's top scorer

Former Boca Juniors and Wigan Athletic striker Mauro Boselli has made a name for himself in the Mexican top flight, winning two trophies with León and three goal scoring titles since 2013. Most of León's chances of success rely on his performance, and scoring against Tigres -their rival in the QF stage- is his specialty.

Boselli claimed the joint goal scoring title alongside Avilés Hurtado, both scoring 11 goals in this tournament.

3. Tigres' dominance in Apertura finals

The team from the North has made a habit out of playing final matches three years in a row. Los Tigres have played the Apertura 2014 final, the Apertura 2015 final and the Apertura 2016 title match, winning the trophy in their two most recent appearances. With their seasoned coach and André-Pierre Gignac leading the way, a fourth final in December for blue-and-gold side is quite possible.

Gignac (left) didn't have the best regular season since he joined Tigres, but he's led the team to two straight titles in December. Will he add a third one this winter?

4. A centennial celebration needs a title to go with it

Toluca may not be one of the favorites to win the title, but they have established themselves as one of the great teams in the Mexican top flight under the current format. Furthermore, their centennial celebrations are still underway, and winning the trophy would be the proper way to cap their 100th birthday.

Former América midfielder Rubens Sambueza will be key to lead Toluca's chances of success in the playoffs.

5. Two massive droughts could come to an end this winter

Cruz Azul and Atlas enter the playoff stage with their sights set on the title...and if possible, trying to end their respective droughts without a championship. "La Máquina" is getting close to reach 20 years without a title, while Los Rojinegros own the longest streak without lifting a trophy in Mexican football, having won their only piece of silverware 66 years ago.

Felipe Mora leads Cruz Azul's hopes to eliminate América and end up winning the Apertura 2017 title.

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