Analysis

Former SS Lazio star Mauricio: Who is Johor Darul Ta’zim’s new signing from Brazil?

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Eastern European Expedition

Mauricio was sent out on loan to Spartak Moscow in Russia for the 2016-17 season. He played a total of 11 Russian Premier League matches and made a solo appearance in the Russian cup. But he still managed to be part of the history in Russia as Spartak won the domestic league for the first time in 16 years that season.

He returned Lazio last summer, but again failed to make a big enough impact playing just four minutes of Serie A leading the way for another move to Legia Warsaw in Poland. He made just three appearances for Warsaw on loan forcing him to look for a move elsewhere. That lead him to terminate his original contract with Lazio as Malaysia beckoned!

A like-for-like replacement?

It’s been a busy 24 hours at Johor Darul Ta’zim FC because they did not just sign an experienced pro, but also waved goodbye to two of their international stars in Brazilian centre-back Marcos Antonio and Argentine midfielder Fernando Elizari.

And the Southern Tigers will be hoping Mauricio will be an upgrade on his compatriot Antonio, five years his senior. But Mauricio will have big boots to fill as Antonio has been a pivotal member of the JDT squad during the last five seasons taking the club to new heights.

The JDT fans will be hoping Mauricio will be the new one to guide them as the club enters a new epoch among Asia’s footballing elite.