Giovani dos Santos saw time for Spurs for the first time in over two months, Carlos Vela scored, and it was another successful weekend for Mexicans in MLS.
Though it was only a 17 minute cameo, Giovani dos Santos saw some much-needed playing time with Spurs' first team. That, along with Carlos Vela's goal in Spain and a successful weekend in MLS were the highlights in the past week for Mexicans playing abroad.
Quiet week for Chicharito, relief for Gio
It was a fairly quiet week for Javier Hernandez, as Manchester United played just once, a 1-0 win over Fulham. Hernandez came off the bench in the 63rd minute with United already ahead.
There was another Mexican player, however, whose appearance off the bench was a more than welcome sight for fans of El Tri. Dos Santos was named to the bench in Tottenham’s 1-1 draw with Stoke City, and replaced Louis Saha in the 73rd minute with the game at 0-0. It was Dos Santos’ first appearance for Spurs since January 7th. He was not, however, named to the squad for Spurs’ 0-0 draw at Chelsea over the weekend.
Elsewhere in Britain, Antonio Pedroza was not named to the Crystal Palace squad for the team’s 1-0 win over Barnsley nor its 3-2 loss to Derby County. Further north, Efrain Juarez did not make the squad as Celtic fell 3-2 to Rangers in the Old Firm Derby.
Vela scores, but Real Sociedad tumbles twice
Carlos Vela found the net again in Spain, opening the scoring for Real Sociedad against Levante in the sixth minute of the teams’ midweek showdown. However, Vela’s goal would not last, as Levante equalized minutes later and would go on to win 3-1, with Vela playing the whole match.
The on-loan Arsenal man was forced to start on the bench for Sociedad’s weekend match, at Real Madrid, but could not save his team after coming on in the 57th minute, as it fell 5-1.
Hector Moreno and Espanyol didn’t do much better, as the Barcelona-based side drew 1-1 at Real Betis and fell 2-1 at home to Malaga. Moreno played the full game against Betis, but picked up a yellow card, meaning he missed out on the Malaga match through suspension.
Real Zaragoza scored two vital wins to give it a glimmer of hope in the relegation battle in La Liga, winning 2-1 at Valencia and 1-0 at home against Atletico Madrid. However, Pablo Barrera missed out on the Valencia game entirely and was forced to watch from the bench against Atletico Madrid.
In the second division, Deportivo increased its lead at the top to seven points with a 2-0 win over Cordoba. Though Andres Guaradado did not get a goal or an assist, he put in a strong shift in the win.
Jonathan dos Santos, who looks set to continue at Barcelona B for the time being, played the full 90 minutes in the team’s 2-1 win over Alcoyano, and like Guardado, put in a strong performance.
Anibal Zurdo rounded out a solid day for Mexicans in the second division, as he scored the opener in Guadalajara’s eventual 2-2 draw at Sabadell. Though Espanyol B had two games – losing 1-0 at Terrassa before exploding for six against Balaguer, Taufic Guarch did not feature in either.
Solid outings for Rodriguez, Ochoa
Francisco Rodriguez did no harm to his place in the starting lineup in Stuttgart’s 1-0 win over Nurnberg, going the full 90 minutes and putting in a good defensive effort. Over in France, Guillermo Ochoa was in net once more for Ajaccio, and made two saves as Ajaccio drew 1-1 versus Lorient.
Though Rodriguez and Ochoa found success, other Mexicans in Europe were less fortunate. Nery Castillo did not recover from injury in time to participate in Aris’ 4-2 win over Panionios. Edson Rivera (Braga, 2-1 win vs. Academica in Portugal), Ulises Davila (3-1 loss at Roda JC in the Netherlands) and Jose Delgadillo (Rijeka, 3-0 loss vs. Hajduk and 1-0 win vs. Inter Zapresic in Croatia) were not called to the squads for their respective games.
Marquez returns, Estrada scores, Baca with the assist
In MLS, Rafael Marquez’s return to the starting lineup coincided with a breakout performance by the New York Red Bulls, who won 4-1. Though he didn’t bag any goals or assists, other Mexican-born players did, as Rafael Baca picked up an assist in San Jose’s 3-0 win over Toronto, and Mexico-born David Estrada continued his scoring run by netting against Houston in Seattle’s 2-0 win.
Elsewhere in MLS, Pavel Pardo went 71 minutes in Chicago’s 1-0 win over the Philadelphia Union, who had recently-signed Home Grown Player Christian Hernandez in the 18. Bryan Leyva started and went 70 minutes in Dallas’ 2-1 loss to Sporting Kansas City.
In Colombia, Mario Garcia went the full 90, but he and Boyaca Chico fell 1-0 at home to Patriotas.