Antonio Mohamed has a decision to make. And he has to make it soon. He probably already has.
The Club Tijuana Xoloitzcuintles coach has to sift through his roster and choose which players he will keep in Mexico City and use them against Pumas UNAM in a Copa MX match Tuesday night.
Mohamed could go with a conservative starting lineup and sit most of his regular starters. After all, he has hardly used his regulars during this domestic tournament featuring teams from the First and Second Division.
The Argentine-born coach could want to continue keeping his star players out of the Copa MX as Tijuana is fighting for the top spot in the regular tournament, the 2012 Apertura.
The Xolos are coming off a 1-0 win against Club America in Mexico City as part of the Apertura tournament. Mohamed decided to keep most of his players in Mexico City where they will face Pumas at Estadio Universitario. But he will most likely hold most of them out.
Out of the list of players Mohamed used against America in the regular tournament, forward Diego Olsina might be one to see action in the Copa MX game against Pumas. He started and played only 54 minutes against America.
Duvier Riascos, Raul Enriquez and Richard Ruiz could also see some action against Pumas. All three played a few minutes against America. Enriquez and Ruiz both scored in the Xolos' last Copa MX game, a 2-1 win against Celaya FC at Estadio Caliente last week.
Mohamed will choose his list of players keeping in mind that a slot in the knockout stage of the Copa MX is at hand.
Tijuana must win its last two group stage matches to secure a slot in the next round.
"We are focused on playing a good game this Tuesday against Pumas," Mohamed said in a team statement. "We have the opportunity to advance in this Cup and we are going to look for the win so we can stay on top."
The Xolos lead Group 6 with eight points. Tijuana is 2-1-1 in the Copa MX. Mohamed's squad earned an additional point for winning the home-and-home series against Merida FC.
Celaya is in second place in the standings, followed by Merida and Pumas is in last place with five points.
The second part of the series against Pumas is set to be played Sept. 19 at Estadio Caliente.
The Xolos will play in two regular season matches prior to the final Copa MX group match against Pumas. Tijuana hosts Jaguares Friday night in a Week 7 match up then have a two week break before traveling to face Atlante Sept. 16.