CONCACAF mover and shakers: Part 2 of an irregular series

In this series of posts I am highlighting the major talent playing in the CONCACAF region, and as always seems to be the case, the best players here will end up at European clubs before long.  This time it took no scouting ability on my part, all that is necessary is a look at the scoring charts for the Mexican League and the CONCACAF Champions League, one name stands out.  I give you, the impossible to ignore…

2: Javier Orozco, Cruz Azul


Javier Orozco is the third top scorer in the Mexican League with 6 goals in 7, he also is the leading scorer in the CONCACAF Champions League with 10 goals in 3 games.  Little foresight is required to say he is going to be one of the stars of Mexican football for some time to come.  The 22 year-old Cruz Azul striker is currently enjoying his best season of his young career.  In the latest Concachampions match away in Panama he helped celebrate Mexican Independence day with his own fireworks.  A first half hat-trick inside 27 minutes meant that the game was far beyond Arabe Unido and that he was rested for most of the second half.  Orozco began his career at the age of 15 with Cruz and made his debut at 17.  He was a raw diamond in need of polishing, so his manager sent him down to the Segunda División, where he was to score 46 goals in one year.  He admits that he matured greatly during that period and his performances meant that he was soon back with Cruz in the Primera Liga.

He seems to have all the attributes of a top scorer.  He is quick and strong, can score with both feet and his head, and has his share of poacher’s goals and long range strikes.  At his age he still has plenty of time to develop further but he already has a great base to build on.

Sorry for the music…

Orozco has made enough of an impression to be called up to the Mexican national squad for the recent games against Ecuador and Colombia, he didn’t score but played well enough to ensure he will be included in the national team as they attempt to qualify for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.  For now though Orozco is focused on Cruz, after his international debut he said, “It was a dream and I want to do it again, although I should say that my ambition at the moment is to help Cruz Azul win the championship.”

Orozco comes from a football family, his father Luis Antonio played for Tecoman and his brother Luis Alberto used to play for Cruz Azul and is currently at second division Los Xolozcuintles de Tijuana.  As a child Javier was a promising baseball player but Cruz fans will be pleased he decided to become a footballer.  On his CCL debut in the 2008/09 season he scored a hattrick against Hankook Verdes and has continued his fine Concachampions form this year.  He became the second player to score 4 goals in a CCL game as Cruz beat Real Salt Lake 5-4 in a wild game, a week after Santos Laguna’s Jose Maria Cardenas became the first to achieve that particular feat.

El Chuletita (trans: “little lamb chop”; his father was el chuleta, which came from Mexican phrase “vete por las chuletas” which kind of means “go get the money”, his older brother became el chuletito and so naturally Javier is el chuletita, now you know…) has also said elsewhere that his dream is to play for a European team and the way he is going this year you wouldn’t bet against him making the move sooner rather than later to El Continente Viejo.  And he certainly has all the attributes necessary to succeed.

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