Arsenal and Liverpool target Hirving Lozano already has one famous nickname, but his Mexico teammate Andres Guardado is hoping to make another stick.
Known as "El Chucky" since his days in the Pachuca youth system, reportedly for hiding under the sheets and scaring his roommates on away trips, Guardado has taken to calling Lozano "el mono diabolico" - the evil monkey. It's a total contrast to the type of person the soft-spoken Lozano is off the field for Guardado, but there's no mistaking his on-field force.
"He really cares about his family. He’s a person who is calm, joyful, happy. He’s a very good friend to his friends. Anybody who knows him has a special affection for the person he is," Guardado said on a special about Lozano airing on Fox Sports in the Netherlands. "To talk about Chucky Lozano is to talk about nobility, to talk about personality and to talk about how when he puts on the soccer uniform he’s true to the Chucky Lozano nickname because he’s an evil monkey."
Article continues below— PSV (@PSV) 27 de diciembre de 2017
Guardado also called Lozano a "mean evil monkey" in an Instgram caption after Mexico's 3-3 draw with Belgium in November. Guardado scored from the penalty spot in that contest while Lozano entered and scored twice for El Tri.
The special also features Lozano's wife, who extolled his vritues as the father of two children.
"He’s a very responsible father, very loving. He plays with the kids a lot. He’s exceptional. He’s a very great person," she said. "He’s a very calm guy, he’s a very happy person. He’s always smiling. That’s something I like a lot about him. He’s also a fighter. He’s very responsible. Very, very, very responsible."
On the field, as Guardado notes, he's anything but tender. Whether he's more like the doll or more like a wild animal, Lozano put fear in opponents all throughout 2017. The 22-year-old moved from Pachuca to PSV in the summer transfer window after helping Tuzos to the CONCACAF Champions League title. There was little adjustment period with Lozano entering the winter break with 11 league goals scored, good enough to tie him for the Eredivisie lead.
PSV returns to league action Jan. 21 after spending time in Florida during the break. Lozano's next match with El Tri likely will come in the United States with Mexico set to play a pair of March friendly matches with a full squad during the FIFA dates.