La Liga has been a favored playground for some of the best names in Uruguay football, past and present. This season is no different in Spain.
From Diego Forlán to Walter Pandiani, La Liga has always been a sea containing plenty of Uruguayan fish. At the moment there are eight Uruguayos representing their country in Spain. We take a look at how the Uruguayans playing in La Liga have coped so far this season.
The club with the most Uruguayans on show is Málaga. Summer buy Michael Santos started off brilliantly for the Boquerones but has found it difficult to follow up, whereas left fullback Federico Ricca has been plagued by injury. The Uruguayo with the most appearances out of the three is forward Chory Castro. The 32-year-old has been a regular for Malaga but one goal in 22 games is simply not good enough.
Málaga also had an Uruguayan manager with former player Marcelo Gato Romero taking over earlier this season. Romero’s tenure didn’t last long, though, as he was sacked this week after winning just one out of his ten games in charge at La Rosaleda.
Just over 78 miles from Malaga, another Uruguayan is earning his living at a first tier Spanish side; Granada. The man in question is 11-time Uruguay international Gastón Silva. The 23-year-old has appeared in a modest 14 games this season, which is mainly down to his injury woes at the beginning of the campaign.
One more than Silva, at 15 appearances for the year, is Las Palmas center-back Mauricio Lemos. The Defensor Sporting youth graduate was overlooked for the first part of the season but has won back his place in the side and is showcasing his tremendous ball-playing ability on a weekly basis. It shouldn’t be too long before Lemos gets the opportunity to represent Uruguay.
Two defenders who are already key figures in the La Celeste dressing room are Atlético Madrid duo José María Giménez and Diego Godín. The pair have, however, had contrasting years. Diego Godín has been the leader at the back where he’s been for some time now and has only missed a few games through injury.
Giménez, on the other hand, has only played eight La Liga games this season. Injuries have been a setback to the youngster and have sidelined him on two occasions but Simeone also seems to prefer Stefan Savic to partner up with Godín even when Giménez is 100% fit.
Last but not least is Luis Suárez. The hitman from Salto has scored 20 and assisted nine goals this term and it has helped Barcelona top the La Liga charts (Real Madrid has one game in hand). With 12 games left to play, his 40 goals of last season will be hard to beat. Suárez will, however, be more focused on winning the title. It would mean his third La Liga in as many years.