Veteran defender Jose Maria Basanta has announced that he will leave Monterrey once his contract is up after failing to reach an agreement on a new contract. The Argentine international will end his contract this summer and might retire from football, although he hasn’t yet reached a decision. Basanta is one of the veterans with the team, having been with the club since 2008 except for a stint in Europe when he joined Fiorentina before returning to the Mexican club.
Jose Maria Basanta made his career in Argentina playing with Estudiantes de la Plate before arriving in Mexico to play with Monterrey. With the club, he became a mainstay in defense and won 2 league titles and 3 CONCACAF titles. In the Apertura 2010, it was a goal from a header by Basanta that gave Monterrey an aggregate lead against Santos Laguna, which they held on to (and even get one more goal from Humberto Suazo). It would go on to be their last Liga MX title for years. During this time, Basanta got Mexican citizenship and even talked about playing for the Mexican NT. This would change when his old Estudiantes coach, Alejandro Sabella, became the coach of the National team with Argentina. Sabella would call him up with Argentina, cap tying him in the World Cup qualifiers and even having him make the 2014 World Cup. In the 2014 World Cup, he would famously do a great job in the Quarterfinal match against Belgium after coming in for Marcos Rojo, who missed the game because of a suspension. Argentina would finish in 2nd place and Basanta would make a move to Fiorentina. Later he would move back to Monterrey where he would get a Copa MX title, another CONCACAF Champions League title and the 2019 Liga MX title, the first since 2010.
Basanta’s tenure in Monterrey is pretty historic. As he leaves, he would be the last player on the team from the successful era of Victor Manuel Vucetich. He was good enough to make a World Cup with Argentina, something not as common for players in Liga MX. Yet as time progressed, he lost his spot with the team and although he gained it back, he had a drop of his level, so it’s not surprising that he wasn’t offered a contract renewal. Still, Basanta will leave as a star and hopefully gets a chance to play after the COVID-19 emergency ends.