All of the major leagues in Europe have now started and the 2018-2019 season is starting to look like it will be a positive one for most Mexican players. This week we saw most of them get playing time in their clubs, and there were others who completed their move to a new club: Omar Govea signed with Royal Antwerp in Belgium, while Joao Maleck looks to be on his way to Sevilla B in Spain’s 3rd division. The only remaining players without a club are Diego Reyes and Oswaldo Alanis, who was released by Getafe without playing a single game. Marco Fabian was also put on his team’s transfer list after their first defeat of the season. Let’s take a look and see how our guys did.
Javier Hernandez- West Ham United
Hernandez started this week and was paired up with Arnautovic up front. It took about 20 minutes for Chicharito to get going, but once he did, he constantly created chances. In the 21st minute, his shot was deflected for a corner. Four minutes later, he got a good pass and put in another good shot that was saved. Shortly afterwards, he was taken down in the area and West Ham was awarded a penalty, which Arnautovic converted. Although he did not score, he had a very good game until he was subbed off in the 66th minute.
Raul was in the starting lineup in his team’s visit to Leicester City. Neither Raul or his team could get anything going at the King Power Stadium. They had very little possession and even less shots on goal. They were defeated 2-0. On the bright side. Raul continues to start and played all 90 minutes. It looks like his Premier League adventure is going to go better than his time in Portugal.
Hirving Lozano-PSV Eindhoven
All aboard the Chucky hype train!!! This week, the defending champions PSV Eindhoven visited newly promoted side Fortuna Sittard. Chucky was a starter on the left wing as usual. After a few goal-scoring chances, Lozano was able to get on the scoreboard with an amazing back heel shot in the 33rd minute. PSV added to their lead and despite conceding a goal, they won and remain near the top of the table. Lozano had an incredible first season, a great World Cup, and now he is showing that he can maintain his good form in the league.
The midweek match against Bate Borisov was his first experience in the Champions League and that went very well too. Chucky had an energetic first half where he created chances and was unlucky to have a header saved by the keeper. In the second half, he and PSV found themselves down in the score line, so Chucky got back to work and tied it up in the 61st with a curling shot into the back of the net that proved unstoppable for the keeper. PSV won the game 3-2. Our boy is tearing it up!
Carlos Uriel Antuna-FC Groningen
FC Groningen hosted Willem II in the second week of the Dutch League. Antuna was not in the starting lineup. Groningen had more possession and more shots on goal but could not get on the scoreboard. They went down 1-0 in the 33rd minute and at halftime Antuna was brought on. Groiningen could not get back in the match and lost the game. They are currently in last place.
Guillermo Ochoa-Standard Liege
The rumors of his impending transfer to Napoli in Serie A ended last week and Memo was left to continue playing in Belgium. This weekend his team visited Lokeren in the fourth game of the season. Ochoa was the starter as usual and played all 90 minutes. Standard had control of the game from the kickoff but could not get ahead. Finally, after trying to score in every way possible, they got ahead in the 65th minute. They scored again in the 79th and 90th. Memo had very little work to do and kept a cleansheet. Even though his chances to move on have not materialized and his team has been eliminated form the Champions League, they will continue to challenge for the league. They are currently in fourth place and face Truiden next week.
Carlos Salcedo-Eintracht Frankfurt
Looking to defend their DFB Pokal championship, Salcedo’s team visited Ulm. Salcedo got the start and played all 90 minutes, he also received a yellow card. Things have not improved for Frankfurt, they were beaten 2-1 and eliminated from the cup. The league gets going next week as they visit Freiburg. Salcedo looks rusty but pretty solid. Unfortunately, rest of the team is weak and disorganized. From the news coming out of Frankfurt, it is also clear that there is turmoil with many of the players in the locker room and the coaching staff is not doing much better. The team separated Marco Fabian from the club among other players. If things do not improve, they could face a real challenge staying in top flight.
Andres Guardado-Real Betis
Betis began the La Liga season by receiving Levante. Guardado started in the middle of the pitch as part of a five man midfield. Despite having 77% of the possession and 22 total shots, Betis was beaten 3-0. They could not make anything happen offensively. Guardado played all 90 minutes but he still does not look right. It seems as though his injury, playing in the World Cup, and a short preseason set him back and are taking their toll on the 31-year-old.
Nestor Araujo-Celta Vigo
NÉSTOR ARAUJO DEBUTÓ EN LA LIGA' Y JUGÓ LOS 90 MINUTOS!!!— Gol Gana Sports mx (@golganasports) August 18, 2018
Por fin se llegó el día del debut del defensor central mexicano en @LaLiga de España, el @RCCelta rescato está mañana un empate de local ante el @RCDEspanyol de #Barcelona.#golganasports #LaLiga #18Ago #Celta #Espanyol pic.twitter.com/q94BdDc18P
After his much anticipated move to Spain and a long off season, Araujo finally made his debut in La Liga. He was in the starting lineup for his team’s home opener against Espanyol. Celta has a new coach, Antonio “El Turco” Mohamed, and a lot of new players, meaning there will be a period of adjustment. The team still looked like they are in preseason and don’t quite have the cohesiveness of a team that has been together for a long time. Araujo looked solid and the defense as a whole looked better than the offense. The game ended in a 1-1 draw and Araujo played all 90 minutes.
Did not play, was left on the bench.
Hector Herrera & Jesus Corona-Porto
Hector Herrera was a starter as usual and Corona was left on the bench to begin the game. Herrera had another solid but quiet game. He tracked back and contributed to the attack but had no assists or goals to show for his hard work. Corona was brought on in the 64th minute. Corona was his usual lively self in attack but could not get on the score sheet. Porto won the game 3-2 and continues at the top of the league table.
Antonio Briseño- Feirense
Feirense played this Monday as they visited Vitoria de Guimaraes. Their good start to the season continues as they won the game 1-0. Briseño was a starter once again, and is looking like he has finally secured his place in the first team. He played all 90 minutes and was solid and sure in defense. He has been a starter and has played the whole game in both of his team’s matches this season, so it looks good for “El Pollo”. Feirense are currently in fourth position, which is amazing for such a small club with limited resources.
Hector Moreno-Real Sociedad
Another season and another year in which Hector Moreno continues to start and play well in Europe. Moreno has been an almost certain starter for whatever club he plays for and Sociedad is no exception. This past weekend, he played in their victory over Villarreal as a starter and played all 90 minutes. There are currently rumors that link him to a move away from La Liga and heading to a Turkish club, but nothing concrete has appeared so far.