Atlas vs. Pumas UNAM – Liga MX Apertura Semifinal, Sunday, December 5, 2021
On Thursday, Atlas took a big step towards reaching their first Liga MX final in 22 years – claiming an impressive 1-0 road victory over Pumas UNAM.
The two sides meet for the second leg of their Apertura semifinal on Sunday, December 5, with UNAM needing to win by two clear goals in order to advance.
If you’re planning to wager on the second leg, you have come to the right place. In this Atlas vs. Pumas UNAM betting preview, I assess the odds and analyze the teams before sharing my prediction and pick.
Atlas vs. Pumas UNAM Odds (Second Leg)
As you can see, Atlas (1.73) is the clear favorite to win the second leg. The Zorros won the first leg away from home, so they will be confident of sealing the deal on home soil.
The best soccer betting sites aren’t giving Pumas UNAM (4.75) much of a chance here. Even the price for the draw (3.30) is high, suggesting that Andres Lillini’s team will struggle to compete on Sunday.
Let’s take a closer look at both sides before settling on an Atlas vs. Pumas UNAM prediction and betting pick.
Can Atlas Hold Onto Their Advantage?
Despite seeing 45% possession, Atlas managed to secure a solid 1-0 victory in the first leg. Once again, Julio Furch put his name on the scoresheet.
The Argentine has bagged eight goals and three assists in 20 Liga MX outings this season. It is also worth noting that Furch has netted four goals in his previous six appearances.
If you have been following the Apertura campaign, you probably won’t be surprised to learn that Camilo Vargas achieved yet another shutout in midweek.
Granted, Furch has been immense for Atlas throughout the campaign. But it could be argued that Vargas has been just as – if not more – important at the opposite end of the field.
The Zorros head into the second leg on a four-game unbeaten streak, having picked up two wins and two draws since their last defeat. They have also lost just one of their previous seven outings.
Boasting the meanest defense in the league, Diego Cocca’s men are in pole position to get the club to its first Liga MX final in 22 years.
Will Pumas UNAM Turn Things Around?
The Pumas gave their all in the first leg. Not only did they dominate possession, but they also registered 15 shots. Still, they were unable to break down Atlas’ sturdy backline.
Right-back Alan Mozo notched three assists in UNAM’s 3-1 win against top-seeded Club America in the previous round, but he was silenced by Atlas left-back Luis Reyes on Thursday.
Striker Juan Dinenno, who has chalked up six goals and four assists this season, was also kept quiet by the Zorros’ unbreakable central-defensive trio.
We shouldn’t forget that Lillini’s men have won six of their previous ten games. They have also lost just three of their past 14 Liga MX outings, proving they can grind out results.
That said, their performances on the road have not been great in 2021. They only managed to win one of their eight away games during the regular season, recording three draws and four losses.
If the Pumas are serious about turning this tie around, they will need to rediscover the late-season form that saw them make an unlikely surge into the top 12.
Atlas vs. Pumas UNAM Prediction (Second Leg)
If everything goes to plan, the Zorros should book their place in the Apertura final on Sunday.
Cocca’s men produced an eye-catching performance to secure the win in the first leg. With the second leg on home soil, I expect them to raise their game and get the job done.
At the end of the day, Atlas boasts the toughest backline in the competition. With Vargas between the sticks and the defense doing its thing, the Pumas will struggle to find a way through.
My Atlas vs. Pumas UNAM Betting Pick
Atlas to Win1.73
If you’re feeling brave, you may be tempted by the Atlas (-1) option. I mean, it wouldn’t be a massive surprise if the Zorros won by two clear goals on Sunday.
However, I’m going with the safe bet on this occasion. Cocca’s men haven’t been involved in too many high-scoring games this season, so I’m backing them to win the second leg without doing anything fancy.
If you’re planning to wager on the other Apertura semifinal, be sure to check out my betting preview for the second leg of Club Leon vs. Tigres UANL.