Woeful Necaxa looks to energize locker room ahead of Clausura 2024

Last-place Rayos have added Diber Cambindo and Salvador Reyes, in talks for Leo Suárez
Necaxa was last in the Liga MX standings a season ago so Rayos management is busy trying to upgrade the club's roster.
Necaxa was last in the Liga MX standings a season ago so Rayos management is busy trying to upgrade the club's roster. / Leopoldo Smith/GettyImages

Necaxa may have missed out on Cristian Calderón but they are still adding new blood into their roster.

After a last-place finish in the Apertura 2023, the Rayos are in desperate need of a talent upgrade … and fast. 

The Liga MX minnows first corralled striker Diber Cambindo (on loan) from Cruz Azul. The 27-year-old Colombian scored 4 goals and added an assist as a back-up on a dysfunctional Cementeros squad, but Necaxa management believes Cambindo will flourish at the point of the Rayos attack.

“Los Rojiblancos” were among the weakest offenses in Liga MX last season; only two teams – Pachuca and Atlas – scored fewer goals.

This week, coach Eduardo Fentanes is helping recruit Leo Suárez – a familiar face – from América. Suárez played for Fentanes while the latter was head man at Santos Laguna and Suárez was on loan to the Guerreros. The little Argentine winger is expected to be relegated to the bench but he is reluctant to leave the Liga MX champs.

The Suárez deal is being packaged with a swap for fullback/halfback Salvador Reyes who is excess to needs now that Calderón has joined América. Reyes never managed to beat out veteran Luis Fuentes at left fullback and figured to be a back-up behind “Chicote.” 

“Los Electricistas” are also considering Uruguayan playmaker Gustavo del Crete who lost his starting job at UNAM and is being made available by the Pumas.

If Necaxa finalizes the Reyes acquisition and convinces Suárez to come along (it is reported that one-time teen sensation Heriberto Jurado could be tossed into the trade, a development that has América taking notice), the “Aguascalentenses” might be able to dream about making the Liga MX playoffs this season. 

Elsewhere around Liga MX

Pachuca has acquired young forward Luis Puente from the Chivas farm team CD Tapatío. Puente, 20, is one of the brightest prospects to come through the Guadalajara academy system in recent memory but the front office felt he was not disciplined enough to be included on the first-team roster.

After several incidents of locker room turmoil last season – including multi-game suspensions for two star players – Fernando Hierro and Co did not want any additional distractions for new coach Fernando Gago. In addition, Puente is only under contract for six more months.

Chivas Nation is hoping Puente doesn’t blossom into a big star, although some reports indicate “El Rebaño Sagrado” has retained 50% of his rights so they could make a profit off him if he blooms with the Tuzos.

New León coach Jorge Bava – in just his second coaching job – will be dealing with an aging roster and the Esmeraldas might struggle to qualify for a spot in the Liga Mx playoffs in the upcoming season.

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Bava – a 42-year-old Uruguayan – is returning to Liga MX – he was a goalie with Atlas in 2008 – fresh from leading Liverpool to a first-place finish in the Campeonato Uruguay then claiming the league title with a convincing 3-0 win over Peñarol in the final.