JAMIE HILL - Tuesday, January 4, 2011
The first half of the Mexican season wrapped up in early December when Monterrey bested Santos Laguna for the Apertura crown. After a one month break, the Primera Division stands ready to kick back into action.
The cast of characters who will be competing under the American banner will be a familiar crew, albeit one with a few significant changes.
Most notably, Jonathan Bornstein will join Monterrey's cross-town rival, Tigres UANL. The US national team left back signed a pre-contract with the club in July.
Bornstein isn't the only Yank making a winter transfer south of the border. The well-traveled Daniel Antunez has found a new home in Estudiantes Tecos.
The midfielder has previously been on the books with the Rochester Rhinos, Pallo-Iirot, and most recently Inter Turku of the Finnish Veikkausliiga. While Tecos are relative minnows in Mexico, the move will allow Antunez to showcase his talents on a much larger stage.
Antunez will join Sammy Ochoa, who is already on the books at Tecos. Ochoa has largely contributed as a reserve player.
Meanwhile, the Americans with national team experience will ready themselves for another half-season tournament. José Francisco Torres and Herculez Gomez will hope to improve upon Pachuca's lackluster Apertura performance and Edgar Castillo will embark on yet another loan adventure, this time at Puebla.
Marco Vidal's loan at Pachuca has ended and he has moved to Club León of the second-level Liga de Ascenso.
Joining Vidal in the second tier are Joe Benny Corona of the reigning Apertura champions Club Tijuana and Indios' Joaquín Hernandez, who recently made his professional debut at the tender age of 16.
In addition to those playing for senior teams, there are more than 30 players with American citizenship toiling in the extensive academy systems of Mexican clubs.
*NOTE: Antunez's and Vidal's moves look final based on Mexican press reports however YA has yet to receive confirmation from their respective clubs.