Steadily working our way through the countdown, the Golazo 50 2017 continues.
In case you missed it here are the picks so far…
Weighing in with expert opinion on the latest two in the countdown are Tom Marshall and Sam Kelly.
River Plate have hardly done badly since allowing Guido Rodríguez to leave El Monumental but the 23-year-old has certainly done enough since departing to avoid being tagged as a Millonario flop.
Progressing through the River youth ranks, Rodríguez was handed his first team debut by club legend Ramón Díaz back in 2014 but despite his early promise, the powerful midfielder was unable to break more permanently into the plans. While that disappointment can sometimes end a young player’s career, Guido left for Defensa y Justicia on loan.
El Halcón have proved to be a useful destination for Argentina’s grandes to farm out academy products and certainly one of the most successful loanees has been Rodríguez. Six months in Florencio Varela as the side’s first choice number five, more than demonstrated that Rodríguez was ready for top flight action. A physical ball winner, decent passer and more than willing runner from deep, El Chacal swiftly appeared to outgrow Defensa y Justicia, helping the club to qualify for international competition for the first time.
There still wasn’t room in Marcelo Gallardo’s plans but Liga MX club Tijuana had seen enough to bring the midfielder north and despite his relative inexperience, Rodríguez proved an immediate hit. Los Xolos weren’t able to lift a title in his time at the Estadio Caliente but in both the Apertura and Clausura, Tijuana finished top before failing in the knockout stages.
Establishing himself as one of the top players in México, Rodríguez looked set for Europe and was handed a call-up to the Argentina squad so for Liga MX giants Club América to swoop in a $7 million deal was something of a coup.
That Liga MX title may yet come for Rodríguez with Las Aguilas and at 23 there is still plenty of time to make the switch to Europe.
“A strong and physical holding midfielder, Guido Rodriguez quickly established himself as the rival to Guido Pizarro as the best player in the position in Mexico. Rodriguez is solid in possession, strong at tackling, has good positional awareness and could replicate Pizarro and move to Europe in the not too distant future.
The real issue with Rodriguez and how far he can go is discipline. In 49 games in Mexico’s first division, Rodriguez has received 21 yellow cards and four reds, two of which have come in ten matches this season for Club América.”