What is the Liga MX playoff format and what are the rules?

Eight sides are in contention for the 2021 Liga Mx Apertura title as we reach the quarter-final stage with América and Monterrey considered favourites.

What is the Liga MX playoff format and what are the rules?
Agustin Cuevas Getty Images

The 2021 Liga MX Apertura reaches its final stretch as the eight remaining sides in the competition now know their path to the December final.

Last weekend, the teams who finished in fifth position through to 12th played in the 'repachaje' or 'play-in' with the four winners progressing to join the four top placed sides from the 17 Apertura games (Club America, Atlas, Leon and Tigres).

Repechaje Apertura 2021

With the exception of Monterrey's comprehensive win (1-4) over Guardianes champions Cruz Azul, all ties proved to be tightly fought contests with the clash between Puebla and Chivas being resolved on penalty kicks. Ultimately it was Pumas, Santos Laguna, Monterrey and Puebla who advance to the last eight with the first leg of the quarter finals being staged on Wednesday with the return legs scheduled for Saturday and Sunday.

Santos Laguna v Atletico San Luis - Playoff Torneo Grita Mexico A21 Liga MXTORREON, MEXICO - NOVEMBER 20: Leonardo Coelho of San Luis (L) fights for the ball with Eduardo Aguirre of Santos during the repechage match between Santos Laguna and Atletico San Luis as part of the Torneo Grita Mexico A21 Liga MX at Corona Stadium on November 20, 2021 in Torreon, Mexico. (Photo by Manuel Guadarrama/Getty Images)

Liga MX 2021 quarter finals

The first legs of the Liga MX 2021 quarter finals will be played on Wednesday 24 and Thursday 25 November 2021, with the return legs on Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 November.

Kick-off times in Eastern Time/Pacific Time.

First leg

Wednesday 24 November

20:00 ET/17:00 PT Pumas vs Club América (Olímpico Universitario 19:00 CST*)

22:05 ET/19:05 PT Monterrey vs Atlas (Estadio BBVA 21:05 CST)

Thursday 25 November

20:00 ET/17:00 PT Puebla vs León (Cuauhtémoc 19:00 CST)

22:05 ET/19:05 PT Santos Laguna vs Tigres (TSM Corona 21:05 CST)

Return leg

Saturday 27 November

20:00 ET/17:00 PT Club América vs Pumas (Azteca 19:00 CST)

21:05 CST Atlas vs Monterrey (Jalisco 21:05 CST)

Sunday 28 November

19:00 ET/16:00 PT Tigres vs Santos Laguna (Nou Camp 18:00 CST)

21:05 ET/18:05 PT León vs Puebla (Universitario 20:05 CST)

*Local time CST - Central Standard Time

Extra time and penalty kicks will be used to resolve ties that end all square after both home and away fixtures.

The semi-finals are scheduled for 1/2 December with the return leg with the final dates penciled in for 9/12 December.