Tag: Mexico

Tom Marshall: Five Mexico-based players ready to make the jump to Europe

Tom Marshall: Five Mexico-based players ready to make the jump to Europe

The countdown is on before the European transfer window slams shut on Sept. 2, & the knock-on effect of clubs scrambling to complete squads is already being felt in Mexico.Monterrey’s Dorlan Pabon is set to join Valencia after just seven games for the club, with Los Rayados admitting that there was nothing they could do to stop the Spanish team paying the $10 million release clause in the Colombian’s contract.Then there is the case of Marco Fabian, who is set to leave Chivas after the club confirmed he is in negotiations with a foreign club.As European teams increasingly look to Mexico as an attractive market for players, here are five realistic European targets that may well be worth taking a punt on.1.   Jefferson Montero – MoreliaThe 23-year-old Ecuadorian winger has started the Liga MX like a man possessed, scoring five goals in five starts & proving impossible to stop at times with his speed & balance.Now much more mature than when he played for Villarreal, Levante & Real Betis in La Liga, Montero was a target for Club America this summer, although it seems like he was waiting for bids from Europe.Reports from the UK have linked Montero to Cardiff City, West Ham, Everton & Crystal Palace over the last few months. And if a story from The Guardian in June saying his release clause is just 3 million pounds is to be believed, Montero could be one of the bargains of the summer.2. Jorge Torres Nilo – TigresThe Tijuana-born, Leon-raised defender has been the regular starting left back for first Atlas & then Tigres for over six years. At 5′ 11″, 25 years of age & with 34 games with El Tri under his belt, Torres Nilo is ripe for a European challenge.Tigres coach Ricardo Ferretti has said that Torres Nilo will stay at least until the end of the 2013 Apertura, yet with purported interest from a team in Russia, enough money could alter that.There have been reports that Tigres are asking for at least $6 million for the player.3.   Oribe Peralta – Santos LagunaKnown outside of Mexico for his goals that won El Tri Olympic Gold last summer in London, Peralta has started the season in fine form for both club & country, scoring seven goals in five games.At 29-years-old, time could be running out on a European move & he has previously stated he is pleased at home-town club Santos Laguna, where he is one of the best-paid players in the league.However, there must be some desire to test himself on the other side of the pond & although the transfer fee & wages would be a major obstacle, there have been few better players in Mexico over the last few years: Peralta has 46 goals in his last 67 league matches.4. Fidel Martinez – Club TijuanaMartinez has raw talent in bundles. When the Ecuadorian first arrived in Mexico with Xolos, that was obvious, yet the question mark was whether or not he could knuckle-down, focus & improve his overall game, not just the easy-on-the-eye step-overs.The 23-year-old winger has passed every test asked of him since & this season is taking more responsible since Colombian Duvier Riascos left the club.He now tracks back, works complex for the team & would be a satisfactory asset for many clubs in Europe’s top divisions.5.   Raul Jimenez – Club AmericaIt’s rare that a player combines a strong physical presence with mobility & satisfactory technique with their feet, yet 22-year-old forward Jimenez has all those qualities. He can play as a number 9, a second striker or even on the wing.The way he has stepped up this season without the prolific Christian Benitez alongside him shows he is maturing & capable of taking on a challenge.The price tag is likely to be high for Jimenez – his former teammate & friend Diego Reyes left to Porto for $9 million, which will put some teams off, yet he’s at the right age & possesses all the necessary qualities to succeed in the Old Continent.

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