By Eduardo Razo
While at River Plate, Matías Kranevitter had stardom written all over him. The defensive midfielder was starring for one of the biggest clubs in South America, drawing interest from clubs in Europe, and the next No. 5 for the Argentina National Team.
There were plenty of high praises for Kranevitter before making the move to Atlético Madrid, which included one from former River Plate attacking midfielder Enzo Francescoli. The Uruguayan made it known that the 22-year-old was the heir apparent to Javier Mascherano for the national team.
However, five years since being sold to Atlético, Kranevitter is looking to rediscover his River Plate form. His tenure with Los Colchoneros didn’t last long as he would get lost in the shuffle as Gabi, Augusto Fernández, Saúl, and Thomas Partey were vying for starts in the midfield under Diego Simeone.
After a season-long loan stint with Sevilla FC, where he appeared in 32 matches, Atlético parted ways with Kranevitter in 2017 after being sold for €8 million to FC Zenit Saint Petersburg. It was a confusing move as he headed to the Russian Premier League, which is outside the top five leagues, Primeira Liga, Eredivisie, and even Süper Lig.
Despite being out of sight for the regular football fan, Kranevitter appeared in 31 matches for Zenit in his first season with the Russian club. Nonetheless, that didn’t last as the following year as El Colo would make 15 appearances and eventually falling out of the Zenit squad completely.