Franco signs for Velez Sarsfield

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BUENOS AIRES - Former Mexico striker Guillermo Franco has joined Velez Sarsfield, the Argentine club said on Monday.

The 34-year-old Franco, who was born in Argentina and made his name playing for Monterrey, is a free agent having left England's West Ham before playing for Mexico for the last time at the World Cup finals in South Africa in June.

"Guillermo Franco has become the first addition to the squad led by (coach) Ricardo Gareca," Velez said on their website.

Franco, without a club since leaving the Hammers, is the first signing of the January transfer window made by Gareca, whose side finished runners-up to Estudiantes in the Apertura, first of two championships in the Argentine season, in December.

He replaces young striker Jonathan Cristaldo who was transferred last month to Matalist Kharkiv of Ukraine as Velez prepare for the Clausura championship that kicks off on January 11.