Roster Changes

Chivas’ 2016 Draft Wrap-Up, More Front Office Changes

The LigaMX Draft, where player’s rights are trampled on for a couple of days and the resulting media circus draws us all in eager to see what our clubs will come back with from the “meat market”.  For Chivas, the event itself was pretty uneventful at least from an outsider’s perspective as they made their biggest moves prior to the event.

After the smoke cleared, and the names like Alan Pulido and Javier Aquino were no longer considered realistic options, Chivas looks to start the season with a rejuvenated midfield and an improved bench. Lets take a look at the new goats.

Jose Juan Vazquez
Age: 28
Previous Club: Leon
Position: Defensive Midfielder

I’ve been a big proponent of getting a solid defensive midfielder for the last few years but this was a big surprise for me at what was an alleged price tag of $7 million. I felt the position was in good hands with the young and still developing Michael Perez — although supplanted by a 36 year-old Carlos Salcido — but I can’t complain when someone of the quality of Gallito is brought on board to more than shore-up what has been a weak link in Chivas’ backbone for many years.

Marco Bueno
Age: 22
Previous Club: Leon
Position: Center Forward

Bueno comes as a loan with a [likely high] option to buy. After being unable to convince Alan Pulido to stay in Mexico, Chivas wasn’t able to reel in a big fish for the striker position like they had hoped. Instead, they opted to sign Bueno who is still young (22) and has a high ceiling to compete with Mexico U23 teammate Angel Zaldivar for the starting job.

Nestor Calderon
Age: 27
Previous Club: Santos
Position: Winger

Calderon is a few years removed from his peak when he reached the national team, but at 27 he’s by no means washed up. He will provide some versatility off the bench and will fill in while Carlos Cisneros is at the Olympics. While the priority is surely to continue developing Cisneros, I don’t think it’s out of the realm of possibility that Calderon could win the starting job.

The last of the signings was a bit of a surprise until Chivas’ twitter account cleared things up. The forward Daniel Gonzalez Vega was announced to be coming from Jaguares but he hadn’t played a single minute in the previous season for Chiapas’ first team aside from CopaMX.

Gonzalez will be 24 in November and according to Chivas will be heading to their second division club. I was going to say that perhaps the club saw someone who was a low risk, high reward signing but he wasn’t even called into preseason with the first team.

Purchase Options, Contract and Loan Extensions

Prior to the draft, Chivas locked up a few of the current members of the team who were only here as loans or coming up to the end of their contracts.

Edwin Hernandez – Previously on loan from Leon

Extended Loans
Rodolfo Cota – 1 year extension to loan from Pachuca

Contract Extensions
Matias Almeyda – Contract Extended for 5 years
Jair Pereira – Contract Extension through 2018
Carlos Salcido – Potentially being extended for one more year (not yet finalized)

Outbound Transfers

Just like there are new players coming in, there are also current players headed elsewhere.

The most surprising transfer was that of Raul Dedos Lopez to Pachuca as an outright transfer and not a loan. As heartbroken as I was to see him go, I understand the front office’s decision to sell now while his value is still somewhat high (speculated to be $5 million).

Other transfers include some names that had returned from a previous loan spell only to be dealt to another club:

David Avion Ramirez – Pachuca [Transfer]
Kristian Alvarez – Santos Laguna [Loan Extended]
David Toledo – Puebla [Loan]
Victor Guzman – Pachuca [Loan Extended]

During the AscensoMX Draft, Chivas sent some familiar names to LigaMX’s second division:

Michel Vazquez – Lobos BUAP [Free Agent Transfer]
Jorge Chaton Enriquez – Coras Tepic [Loan]
Giovani Hernandez – Coras Tepic [Loan]
Marco Antonio Granados – Coras Tepic [Loan]
Giovani Casillas – Tampico Madero [Loan]
Nestor Vidrio – FC Juarez [Loan]
Edgar Chore Mejia – FC Juarez [Loan Extended]

With that, the Ascenso league becomes almost a graveyard for Jose Luis Real’s ex-pupils.

Jaime Ordiales Out As Sporting Director

In a surprising move (when isn’t it a surprise when it comes to Chivas’ front office, right?) Chivas sacked Jaime Ordiales after what most would consider a successful season. The reasoning is that Chivas will be a taking a more “Euro” approach by having Matias Almeyda take on the responsibilities of the Sporting Director and in turn have more say with regards to personnel decisions. Essentially the “Sporting Director” position will cease to exist, and with it goes Ordiales’ job. It’s a pretty ruthless move by Higuera and Vergara and seeing a teary-eyed Ordiales try to get through his press conference was tough but such is life I suppose. The revolving door of execs goes for another spin.

If you were holding out hope for a national team player signing, Jose Luis Higuera made it clear that while an attempt was made, the roster is all but finalized. Yeah, he could be misleading is to stop the never-ending tweets about Alan Pulido but it is what it is and I’m content with the roster we have right now. Higuera may not be everybody’s cup of tea what with his late night riddles and never backing down from a twitter fight, you can’t deny that he’s brought in players that we were told were unattainable by previous execs *cough* Nestor *cough*.

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