Seven Copa America Centenario players we want to see in MLS
“Discovery” is a unique term in MLS, and in June it hit close to home.
There is no doubt MLS teams spent the last month traveling from coast to coast to scout the plethora of talent that was here for the Copa America Centenario.
It gave teams a chance to see some of the top players in this hemisphere up close, and to watch them live multiple times without booking flights to Colombia or Peru or Brazil. The scouting notebooks are certainly chock full of names to watch, but here are a few players who probably caught the eye of MLS teams and might be targets in the next few transfer windows.
Marcos Ureña, forward, Costa Rica
The Costa Rican forward has earned less attention than his teammates in the attack, Bryan Ruiz and Joel Campbell, both of whom would be fantastic in MLS but are outside the normal price range. Still, Ureña showed well for the Ticos as the lone striker and would make for a good signing in MLS.
Ureña is under contract for two more years at FC Midtjylland in Denmark, but played just eight games last season in league play and had two goals. A transfer fee would be involved, but Ureña likely wouldn’t fall into the DP or TAM threshold and could be a good deal for a team with needs up top.
Alejandro Guerra, midfielder, Venezuela
Guerra played four games for La Vinotinto in the Copa America, starting on the right wing and putting in good shifts for a Venezuela team that was one of the surprises of the Copa America. He most notably gained attention for his shot off the crossbar that set up Salomon Rondon’s game-winning goal in a 1-0 win over Uruguay.
Guerra, 30, plays for Atlético Nacional in the Colombian first division, but saw minutes in just eight games last season after starting 26 games the previous year. He is capable of playing the No. 10 spot in midfield. Guerra’s play in the Copa and with Atlético Nacional earned the attention of other clubs in South America, as Fluminese could be lining up a bid for the midfielder. It would likely take a DP salary to lure Guerra to MLS.
Francisco Calvo, defender, Costa Rica
The 23-year-old Costa Rican entered the fray at the Copa America after Kendall Waston was red-carded, and he proved to be a very intriguing prospect.
Calvo is capable of playing both left back and left center back, and he showed good composure on the ball and a keen understanding of spacing on the back line. Costa Rica played with a three-man back line with two wingbacks, forcing Calvo to cover a lot of space with Ronald Matarrita bombing forward on his flank. He stood up to the challenge. Calvo played a lot of minutes for Saprissa last season after transferring from the lesser-known Santos de Guápiles, and he could be due for a move Stateside, where plenty of Ticos are thriving.