With the Liguilla kicking off this weekend, Mexico's 2011 Apertura tournament will soon be in the books. That means we're not far from the winter transfer market, when teams shuffle their rosters looking to strengthen the lineup heading into 2012.
But the upcoming transfer window in Mexico will not be a closed affair. With so much young Mexican talent opening doors in Europe, this winter's window promises to bring more focus than ever on the league and its young prospects. As a result, several more young Mexicans could see themselves headed not to other FMF clubs, but across the Atlantic to Europe.
Here are a few members of El Tri's extended pool who may be ready to move to Europe, as well as a couple to keep an eye on down the road.
Ready to go
Nestor Calderon, MF, Toluca
Why it's time: The 22-year-old has been a regular in the Mexican first division for three and a half seasons -- seven tournaments total. Calderon, one of the eight U-23 national team players suspended before Copa America, bounced back to become a bright spot in a poor tournament for Toluca, starting 14 matches for the Devils and scoring three goals. With all that experience under his belt, the timing for Calderon to go abroad has never been better. Toluca is certain to retool for the Clausura, so this winter could be the time Calderon's European dreams finally turn to reality.
Where he would fit: Sunderland has been after Calderon for years, but the idea of him taking his torrid game to the frigid northeast of England may not add up. A mid-table team in the more open, attack-oriented La Liga would provide a chance for the winger to thrive.