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Liga MX 2018 Apertura: What you need to know before kickoff

Liga MX
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Apertura: Martinez tops list of 10 new players to watch

Liga MX
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Gonzalez named Liga MX rookie of the year

Monterrey
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Djaniny leaves Santos for Saudi Arabia's Al-Ahli

Transfers
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Marquez takes director role with Liga MX's Atlas

Atlas
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 By Tom Marshall

Liga MX 2018 Apertura: What you need to know before kickoff

Andre-Pierre Gignac and Tigres should continue to be a contender for the Liga MX Apertura crown as usual.
Andre-Pierre Gignac and Tigres should continue to be a contender for the Liga MX Apertura crown as usual.

Russia 2018 may be over and leagues in Europe are still a couple of weeks away from starting up but a cure for the post-World Cup blues can be found in Liga MX, with the 2018 Apertura starting this Friday.

Here are 10 key questions leading into the new season in Mexico:

Which teams are the favorites to win this time around?

The same ones as last season and the season before: northern powerhouses Tigres and Monterrey.

Tigres has had a stable summer and looks even stronger this Apertura. The...

 By Eric Gomez

Liga MX: Yairo Moreno, Roger Martinez among 10 to watch this Apertura

Roger Martinez has shown what he's capable but Club America will need him to show it consistently all season long.
Roger Martinez has shown what he's capable but Club America will need him to show it consistently all season long.

Plenty of new faces will inundate the Mexican first division during the 2018 Apertura. More than half of the 18 Liga MX squads have gone abroad to make signings intending to help them wrest the title away from Santos Laguna, the defending champions.

Recent years have seen Liga MX expand beyond its usual market to bring players in, and this year is no exception. A 2014 World Cup runner-up, a Euro 2008 third-place winner and a 2011 FIFA U-17 World Cup champion are among those joining the league,...

Former U.S. youth international Jonathan Gonzalez named Liga MX rookie of the year

ESPN FC's Taylor Twellman doesn't understand comments that Jonathan Gonzalez fell through the cracks in U.S. Soccer after he made numerous appearances for the youth national team.
ESPN FC's Herculez Gomez gives his take on where the U.S. fell short with Jonathan Gonzalez, leading him to choose to play for Mexico.

Former United States youth international Jonathan Gonzalez was named rookie of the year at Liga MX's "Balon de Oro" awards ceremony in Los Angeles on Saturday.

The 19-year-old central midfielder debuted for Monterrey last July and enjoyed a breakout 2017 Apertura, after which the California native switched allegiances from the United States to Mexico.

"I'm very happy for this recognition," Gonzalez said. "I'd like to thank my club, Antonio Mohamed's coaching staff, and, of course, my family."

Toluca...

Djaniny Tavares leaves Santos Laguna to join Saudi Arabia's Al-Ahli

Djaniny ran away with Liga MX's golden boot with 14 goals.
Djaniny Tavares, the top scorer in the 2018 Clausura, has left Santos Laguna for Saudi Arabian club Al-Ahli.

Djaniny Tavares has left Santos Laguna to join Saudi Arabian side Al-Ahli, the Liga MX team announced on Friday.

Cape Verde international Djaniny netted 16 goals last season to lead the league and to fire Santos to the Clausura title and had been linked with a move to Sevilla earlier this summer.

A Santos Laguna statement indicated that Al-Ahli had met the 27-year-old's buy-out clause in his contract and added that he accepted the offer to move to Saudi Arabia.

Djaniny won two league titles in...