Mexico's Apertura 2008 season has just a couple of weeks left in the regular season and after this weekend's matches the playoff picture has become a little clearer.
It went from dark to murky. So, maybe then it didn't clear up at all.
Typically, the Mexican league playoffs are in question up until the waning moments of the last games of the regular season. So predictions, charts and stats don't much matter until all is said and done. Such is the craziness that engulfs the league.
Still, here's how the playoffs would look if the season were over.
1 San Luis vs. 8 Santos
2 Morelia vs. 7 Tecos
3 Tigres vs. 6 Toluca
4 Atlante vs. 5 Chivas
The system is simple this year as opposed to other seasons. The top two teams in each group get in. Then, the two teams with the most points from the rest of the field get in as well. Group standings are:
1: Atlante 23, Santos 20, Pachuca 19, Indios 16, Monterrey 16, Puebla 12
2: Morelia 24, Chivas 22, Tecos 21, Pumas 20, Cruz Azul 20, America 18
3: San Luis 28, Tigres 23, Toluca 21, Atlas 18, Jaguares 15, Necaxa 11
San Luis is the only team to have clinched a playoff spot while and Puebla and Necaxa are already eliminated. Thus, there are 16 teams with life left. Right behind Santos are Pachuca, Pumas and Cruz Azul and then close behind them are America and Atlas.
(Now, on an aside, it would be a lot easier to have one table and the top eight go through since the groups in Mexico change before every Apertura season but for purposes of this post that's neither here nor there...)
Lots will happen from now until the end of the season but the playoff picture is slowly starting to take shape. Of course, a week from today more than half of the teams may have changed positions in the table.