With the 2023 Clausura due to start soon, Mexican fans will be glad to welcome back domestic football after the disappointing showing of their nation at the Qatar World Cup.
Again, the big teams have been busy reinforcing their ranks with the new season in mind, and here are some of the top players to look out for in 2023.
Liga MX best players to watch in 2023 Clausura
Attacking midfielder Guzmán almost joined Chivas for the 2020 season, only to fail a drugs test just before it started. Now he has got his long awaited move after a great campaign last year with Pachuca. He is ranked as one of the best in his position in the league.
Reyes has hopes of forcing his way into the Mexican national team now that he has América from Puebla. Prized for his versatility, because he can be deployed either as a centre-back or holding midfielder, his new club beat off a host of other suitors to acquire his signature.
Meanwhile goalkeeper Luis Malagón has also joined América with a growing reputation, having been part of the Mexico team that claimed a bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics.
He has been shoes to fill as he is replacing Mexican number one, Guillermo Ochoa, who has left to play his club football in Italy.
Midfielder Cortizo had a strong season for Puebla last year, netting five goals in 20 appearances from central midfield. That earned him a move to Monterey where he will need to prove that he make his mark at a higher level.
Another midfielder to join Monterrey, this time on loan, is Omar Govea, who began his club career with América, before moving to Europe with Porto, and then enjoying spells in Belgium and Romania. He will be looking to find the form again that saw him win four senior caps for Mexico.
Striker Gorriarán was the most expensive signing of the winter transfer window, with Tigres having paid Santos Laguna a reported US $13 million for his services.
Uruguayan midfielder Gorriarán, began his club career with River Plate in Argentina, before spending two seasons in Hungary with Ferencváros. He signed for Santos Laguna in 2019.
He was named in Uruguay’s initial squad for the Qatar World Cup, but did not make the final cut.
He may be 39 years old now, but Alves remains one of the highest profile foreign footballers to have graced Mexican football. With pace now largely a thing of the past, he was moved into midfield by Puente del Rio last season and he repaid the move with a good number of assists.
Part of the Brazil squad that reached the World Cup quarter-finals.
Anybody good enough to wear the number ten shirt at Boca Juniors cannot be ignored, and the winger has also enjoyed a successful career in Europe, winning trophies with both Atlético Madrid and Benfica.
And he also played for Argentina 14 times. UNAM will be hoping that he turns out to be one of the signings of the season.
Rivas has also joined UNAM, a like for like replacement for the departed Leonel López. A defensive midfielder with fine vision and the ability to take control of the ball, it is hoped that he could form a fine partnership with Higor Meritāo.
Sosa may be 36 years old now, but he remains a quality goalkeeper, and Pumas may have done a shrewd piece of business in signing him. He previously played for both Monarcas Morelia and Independiente de Avilleneda.
Gustavo del Prete
Argentine del Prete did not have a good Apertura 2022 and lost his starting spot in the UNAM line-up. However, there are signs that he may be getting back to his best form as a striker, and he will be looking for a strong 2023.
Antuna was once on the books of Manchester City, although he never played for them, and was loaned instead to FC Groningen and LA Galaxy,
The winger subsequently joined Cruz Azul, and has been capped by Mexico at every level from under-21 upwards.
In the eyes of many, Aguirre is one of the best Mexican footballers to ply his trade in their own league right now.
The left back plays for Monterrey and also for the Mexican national team, and is renowned for his reading of the game, which has been described as “watching it in slow motion.” He was part of the squad that won bronze at the Tokyo Olympics.
With his father El Chacó Giménez also a forward, it seems that his son Santiago has inherited his goalscoring instincts. At Cruz Azul he has mainly been used off the bench, but this could be the season that he stakes his place for a regular berth in the team. He has already made a substitute appearance for the Mexican national team.
A talented left-back, who has become a regular starter for Santos Laguna, he has been called up to the senior Mexican squad, but has yet to make his debut at that level. He is tipped though as one who could have a breakout season in 2023.
Centre-back Salcedo is back in Mexican football with Juárez, after a brief spell in the MLS with Toronto. He also had a season in Europe with Eintracht Frankfurt. He has 47 senior caps for Mexico, and played for them at the 2018 World Cup.
Having been overlooked for Qatar, he will be hoping to force his way back into the national reckoning again.
Gallardo, though, was ultimately included in the team that travelled to the Middle East. The highly experienced left-back began his career with UNAM before making the switch to Monterrey, for whom he won the Apertura in 2019 and the Copa MX.
Another man who travelled to Qatar, winger Vega has been with Guadalajara since 2016, making 121 appearances for them, and scoring 24 times, another member of the bronze medal winning squad from the Tokyo Olympics.
Now 36, Montes is now getting to the veteran stage of his career, but he remains one of the finest midfielders in Mexican football. He is approaching 300 games for Léon, the club he first joined on loan from Pachuca back in 2011.
Another in the crop of talented left-backs that Mexican football appears to produce in abundance, Calderón has also been played further forward by his club Tapatío, whom he joined on loan from Guadalajara in 2019, and can also function as an outright winger.
He will be hoping to rediscover the form in 2023 that earned him four senior caps for Mexico.
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