Sunday, November 30, 2008

Liguilla as it stands

For those who may not follow the Mexican league closely but still have an interest in it, the playoff system may seem a bit confusing. It's not really but it could seem that way.

For the benefit of those who are wondering what will happen once the semifinal round is over, here's a quick description.

- Eighth-seeded Santos and third-seeded Atlante advanced to the semifinals where they will await the winners of the series between Toluca (No. 2 seed) and Tecos (7) as well as Pumas (4) and Cruz Azul (5). Once the quarterfinals are over, the teams will re-seed and the lowest-remaining seed plays the highest-remaining seed. Thus, Santos will play either Toluca or Atlante in the next round.

- Higher-seeded teams need only draw in the quarters and/or semis to advance to the next round. Atlante and Tigres tied 2-2 after 180 minutes but Tigres did not force overtime or penalties. Atlante proved to be the better team in the regular season and that was a sufficient enough of a tiebreaker to advance. However, there must be a winner in the final. If it's all tied up after 180 minutes and 30 minutes of extra time, then there's penalties.

- Each round consists of home-and-away series, with the lower-seeded team hosting the first leg.

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