Playing in the world’s most demanding and difficult leagues in Europe is not an easy task and those that make it can count on having many ups and downs. After an amazingly good start for some Mexican footballers playing in Europe, things have taken a turn for the worst this week for a few of them. Let’s start our weekly tour of Europe by looking at the few bright spots and then taking a stroll down misery lane.
After a summer filled with uncertainty and speculation, Diego has finally found a club. This week he travelled to Turkey and signed for local powerhouse Fenerbahce. If you have never had the chance to watch the Turkish Super League, I recommend doing it. The league may not be top-tier in Europe but it features many good players, intense rivalries, and some of the most passionate fans on the planet. Best of luck to Diego Reyes in his new adventure.
Hirving Lozano PSV Eindhoven
It seems like on a weekly basis I get the privileged to write about Chucky and his amazing performances in the Netherlands and now in the Champions League. By his standards this week was a down week. In the game against PEC Zwolle, Chucky managed to create few chances for himself and his teammates. He looked a bit less involved than usual, perhaps he was saving himself for the Champions League. Despite his less than peak performance he still managed to get up the left wing and put in a great cross for Luuk de Jong, who finished with a header that ended up in the back of the net. PSV won the game 2-1 and remains in first place in the league.
Later in the week, PSV played the second leg vs BATE Borisov and our boy was on target once again. In the 62nd minute, he put the finishing touch on the game and PSV won 3-0. He got a loose ball, dribbled around the last defender and put it past the keeper. I think it is safe to say that there is no stopping him. PSV have now advanced to the group stage of the Champions League.
His short time in the Premier League has been pretty good so far. Raul has been in the starting lineup and has scored once in 3 games. This week his team faced the defending champions Manchester City. This was a very one-sided game and Wolverhampton were fortunate to come out of it with a point. Manchester city had over 70% of the possession and the majority of scoring opportunities. Raul was once again in the starting XI and played all 90 minutes. He played as the lone striker in a 3-4-3 and was very isolated and ineffective because of his team’s lack of possession.
Carlos Salcedo-Eintracht Frankfurt
In the first game of the Bundesliga season, Eintracht Frankfurt faced Freiburg. Salcedo featured in the starting lineup and played all 90 minutes. Salcedo looked a lot better than he did in the cup games. He was solid in his tackling and his anticipation of the ball was also on point. In the 60th minute, he made a late challenge and was yellow carded. Despite the yellow card, he and the rest of the defense played very well and they got the win 2-0.
Javier Hernandez-West Ham United
Chicharito was left on the bench for his team’s visit to the Emirates Stadium to play Arsenal. West Ham took the lead in the 25th with an Arnautovic goal but it all fell apart after that. Arsenal ran all over their shaky defense and scored 3 goals. Chicharito was brought on in the 59th minute but could not make anything happen. With the form that Aranautovic is on, it does not look good for Chicharito. It is doubtful that he will be a starter anytime soon and the manager is set on a lineup with only one striker.
However, in the midweek League Cup matchup, Chicharito was given a chance to start and played all 90 minutes. In the 91st minute, he got a pass just outside the area and was able to dribble around the defender and the goalkeeper to finish with a goal. West Ham won the game 3-1 against the Wimbledon.
Hector Herrera, Jesus Corona-Porto
Herrera was one of the few bright spots for Porto this past weekend. The defending champs went down 2-3 to Vitoria de Guimaraes. Herrera was involved all over the pitch and kept pushing his team up, but he could not make up for their weak defense. Corona came on in the 51st minute to try and generate some offense. He showed good pace and movement but pulled his hamstring or a muscle in his glutes and was subbed off in considerable pain in the 73rd. Hopefully, it is not serious and we can see him back soon.
Guillermo Ochoa- Standard Liege
Standard Liege received a visit from a team near the bottom half of the table team. Unexpectedly, Memo had a bad game all around vs St. Truiden. His defense let him down and left him unsupported in the 18th minute, conceding the first goal of the game. His most egregious error of the game came in the 69th minute when he got the ball back from a defender and made an ill-timed and badly executed pass that went straight to an opponent. The attacker easily put the ball past Memo and Standard was down in the score. Luckily, they were able to turn it on offensively and scored two more times to end the game and win 3-2. They remain in fourth place in the Belgian League.
In other news, Memo finally decided he had enough of the afro and cut his hair very short. It looks pretty good.
Oswaldo Alanis- Real Oviedo
After being shopped around all over the place by Getafe, Alanis finally signed with second division club Real Oviedo. It is not ideal for him or Mexico to have players in the lower divisions of Europe. Hopefully, he can show he is good enough to get another chance.
Omar Govea- Royal Antwerp
Very excited to this new challenge with Royal Antwerp F.C.— Omar Govea (@96govea) August 16, 2018
I'm totally committed to give my all to my team mates ,supporters and the club to achieve the goals that we have for this year@official_rafc pic.twitter.com/dybmwDLqNN
In his first game for his new club, Govea was in the starting lineup. It was looking good for the midfielder but at the 15th minute he made a horrible tackle and received a red card. Not the debut that he or his club wanted or expected.
Carlos Uriel Antuna-FC Groningen
Did not play in the game, he was left on the bench.
Did not play in the game, he was left on the bench.
Marco Fabian-No club
After his less than ideal exit from Frankfurt, Fabian was shopped around to other clubs. He received an offer from Fenerbahce just like Diego Reyes. It was looking good for him but it was all for nothing. Fabian arrived for his medical exam and even took some pictures with a Fenerbahce scarf. Reports from the club state dthat he did not pass his medical exam due to chronic back problems. Fabian and his people state that it was due to contractual differences. Time is running out and it looks like his time in Europe is over unless a last-minute deal can be found.