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Sep 2, 2014

Veteran Blanco makes the Liga MX best XI

At the grand old age of 41, Cuauhtemoc Blanco continues to be an influence for Puebla.

Ah, the mighty have fallen -- but then, how far is the fall really when Club America is still at the top of the table?

Still, they're tied with Monterrey in the standings with many games left to play.

What's more, just knowing the unbeaten team has been taken down gives every other club hope of an upset.

The players who stepped forward and made a difference are in this week's Liga MX Best IX.

Hirving Lozano: Pachuca, forward -- His nickname is "Chucky," and the deadly doll himself would approve of how Lozano has been killing it in league play.

Lozano's double strike helped his side claim a third win in four games.

With two goals against Leon, the young Mexican striker is definitely a baby-faced assassin who is helping Pachuca fans get over the loss of Enner Valencia.

Wilberto Cosme: Puebla, forward -- It's not easy to perform well when the threat of relegation looms over your club, but the veteran forward has seen it all and knows how to get the job done.

The Colombian tallied professionally and calmly twice against Morelia, providing the needed goals in the 3-2 match.

Humberto Suazo: Monterrey, forward -- Monterrey has been nipping at the heels of Club America and finally drew even in the standings this week.

Victory wasn't easy against a feisty Queretaro club, and the four yellow cards Los Rayados received reflected that. Dorlan Pabon managed a fine assist, but it was veteran Suazo who put the only goal of the game away.

Davide Cabrera: Pumas, midfielder -- Cabrera set up his teammates for plays that led to their playing toe-to-toe with the league leaders. Ultimately striker Dante Lopez was cast in the role of Jack the Giantkiller when he scored the lone late goal that took down Club America's unbeaten record in Liga MX this season, but Cabrera's work all game long made the finish possible.

Cuauhtemoc Blanco: Puebla, midfielder -- The old guy has still got it, at least on the evidence in this game, where his tricky passes gave teammates opportunities.

It could be that the club has finally unlocked the potential that Blanco brings by adjusting to his style of play. The results have been positive so far. It remains to be seen if they can keep it up.

Emiliano Armenteros: Chiapas FC, midfielder -- The Argentine assisted on the first goal of Chiapas FC against Tigres, then scored the second to help his team to a 2-0 victory.

The pick of the bunch from last weekend's action in Mexico.

Fausto Pinto: Cruz Azul, defender -- In a gritty match with seven yellow cards, sometimes the player who keeps his cool is the most effective.

The match with Chivas ended scoreless, but with the Cementeros as the away team, it could be considered a win and due largely to effective defending against the Guadalajara attack.

Paulo da Silva: Toluca, defender -- Almost the entire back line of Toluca could claim credit for the win over Veracruz, given how left back Jordan Silva scored the other goal for Toluca and another central defender, Carlos Esquivel, had the assist on da Silva's goal in the 2-1 game. Still, it was the experienced Paraguayan defender who led the way.

Dario Veron: Pumas, defender -- Veron organized the Pumas defense against their bitter city rivals and made sure the Club America attack could not get through in the 1-0 game.

Bruno Pires: Chiapas FC, defender -- The veteran Paraguayan opened up the scoring for his club against Tigres to lead the way for the win.

Cirilo Saucedo: Tijuana, goalkeeper -- Sometimes, a goalkeeper has to struggle to shake off an early goal, and Saucedo managed to do that well, turning aside a number of shots from University of Guadalajara and keeping the score close until teammate Juan Arango was able to get the tying goal.

Andrea Canales

Andrea Canales has covered soccer for over a decade and has loved the beautiful game most of her life. She has watched games in Azteca, interviewed nine El Tri coaches and covered three World Cups. She lives in Los Angeles. Follow her on Twitter @soccercanales.

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