After a goalless draw at StubHub Center last week, the LA Galaxy travel to Torreón to take on Santos Laguna in the second leg of their CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal clash.
All the momentum is with Liga MX sides, but the Galaxy look to be far and away the best positioned MLS team heading into the second leg.
Part of that is because the Galaxy held Santos Laguna goalless, and an away goal in Torreón could well make this tie go in the Galaxy's favor.
The crux of this second leg, though, is the question of which Santos Laguna will show up. While we can be fairly certain of the class players Galaxy possess, there is a growing uncertainty about Santos Laguna. Will we see the side from the start of the Liga MX Clausura that looked so balanced under new manager Luis Zubeldia, or the one that is winless in their last five games?
The bottom line is that Santos Laguna look more beatable than they've ever been this season. Reaching the semifinals would be a significant milestone for the Galaxy and you can be sure the players will be thinking along much the same lines.
However, the potential wild factor is that star-forward Djaniny Tavares will be back from injury for the Guerreros. As previous games in Liga MX have illustrated, Santos Laguna radically improve with the Cape Verdean international on the field.
These contrasts underscore everything of what could make this the most engaging second leg of the quarterfinals. One team looks to disrupt the momentum, the other to keep up with history.
LA Galaxy 0-0 Santos Laguna - February 24, 2016 - CONCACAF Champions League
The LA Galaxy survived a second half surge from Santos Laguna to hold the Liga MX side to a goalless draw in the first leg of their CCL Quarterfinals clash.
Galaxy (4-4-2): Kennedy; Rogers, DeLaGarza, Van Damme, Cole; dos Santos, De Jong, Gerrard, Boateng; Zardes, Keane
Santos (4-2-3-1): Marchesin; Abella, Izquierdoz, Araujo, Villafana; Molina; De Buen; Djaniny, Calderon, Rabello; Orozco