It has been particularly busy for Liga MX teams looking to purchase players outside of Mexico. Here are 5 Liga MX newcomers to keep an eye on for the Clausura 2015.
1. Walter Kannemann
The 23-year-old Argentine defender arrived this winter to Atlas from the Copa Libertadores titleholders, San Lorenzo. Nicknamed ” El Gringo”, Kannemann made a total of 79 appearances for San Lorenzo and scored 4 goals. Kannemann can act as a center-back on either side of the field or as a left-back.
There is reason to believe that the Argentine will move rapidly into Atlas’ starting lineup. The Rojinegros’s defense highlights one of the weaknesses Atlas showed in the Apertura 2014. With the exit of Facundo Erpen to Puebla and Luis Gerardo Venegas not in his best form, Atlas’ left side of their defensive line should be Kannemann’s for the taking.
2. Silvio Torales
Silvio Torales is a 23-year-old Paraguayan international that arrived to Pumas UNAM for the Clausura 2015. With 175 appearances for Nacional, Torales was one of the most consistent performers in the Paraguayan league in the past few seasons. He was an integral part in Nacional’s midfield composed of Marcos Melgarejo, Marcos Rivero, and Derlis Orue that reached the Copa Libertadores final of 2014.
With the exit of Martin Romagnoli from Pumas and Leandro Augusto’s retirement, it is expected that Torales will claim one of the starting spots in the midfield. He is more than capable of partnering up with David Cabrera in the middle or playing on the left-side of the midfield.
3. Gabriel Hauche
Ever since Tijuana’s arrival to the top flight of Mexican soccer very little can be criticized of their signings from abroad. Their latest signing comes in the form of Gabriel Hauche from the Argentine champions Racing de Avellaneda. With a total of 149 appearances for Racing, Hauche scored 28 goals and grabbed 17 assists. The Argentine can play as secondary striker or on either side of the wing.
With Dario Benedetto’s departure to Club America, all points seem to indicate that Hauche can play an important part of Xolos’ attack. In fact, he seems to be the kind of player very much in the mold of Benedetto that can bring that spark in the final third. Even Mauro Gerk, ex-Xolos player and Racing assistant manager, gives his stamp of approval.
Que gran jugador se lleva mis xolos de Tijuana !!!! El mejor de los deseos para Gaby Hauche
— Mauro Gerk (@tanquegerk) December 25, 2014
4. Edwin Cardona
Edwin Cardona arrived to Monterrey this winter as a player that was slowly working himself up through the ranks of Colombian soccer. While he didn’t enjoy the same rise to fame as fellow countryman James Rodriguez, Cardona was a regular in Colombia’s youth setup. Known as “La Joya”, meaning the jewel, Cardona is a talented playmaker who likes to elaborate play from the center of the midfield.
In total, Cardona has made 110 appearances at the club level, scoring 27 goals and obtaining 11 assists.
It is no secret that Monterrey’s midfield isn’t getting younger. With Neri Cardozo and Cesar Delgado near the end of their careers, Cardona seems to be the player Monterrey has indicated to take up the baton in the midfield.
5. Roque Santa Cruz
Roque Santa Cruz arrives to Cruz Azul as the big money signing of the Clausura 2015 in Mexico. The 33-year-old last played for Malaga CF in Spain, and he has made over 474 professional appearances, scoring 116 goals. In addition to his impressive resume in Europe, Santa Cruz is captain of the Paraguayan National Team.
With the departure of Mariano Pavone from the Mexican club, Santa Cruz will be the one responsible of getting rid of Cruz Azul’s scoring woes of season’s past. The minutes will be there, and if he keeps the same level of consistency that he showed in past teams, he is guaranteed to get the ball in the back of the net.