Mexicans in Europe: Vela, Sociedad face Levante with MLS rumors flying
Mexico striker Carlos Vela has been out of goals and out of form of late, but rumors about a move in the near future to MLS continue to run.
A report from Spain this week suggested Vela was unsettled at Real Sociedad and has asked the club's president to leave, while ESPN's John Sutcliffe stated on Thursday that talks to take the striker to MLS are "very advanced."
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Vela has previously indicated that an offer last summer to move closer to Mexico was "interesting."
With all the speculation swirling, 26-year-old Vela will look to help lift David Moyes' struggling side on Sunday away against Levante (6 a.m. ET).
El Tri teammate Diego Reyes won't be able to take his place at the heart of La Real's defense, due to suspension, following his sending off last weekend.
Sticking in Spain, Jonathan Dos Santos will be hoping for his first La Liga start in October for high-flying Villarreal, who travel to Las Palmas on Sunday (10 a.m. ET). A victory could see The Yellow Submarines move to the top of La Liga in the unlikely case other results fall their way.
Guillermo Ochoa's Malaga host Deportivo La Coruna (Saturday, 4 p.m. ET), although El Tri's goalkeeper will most likely be on the bench.
Next door in Portugal, Porto's Mexican crew of Hector Herrera, Jesus "Tecatito" Corona and Miguel Layun will face a tough test against fourth-placed Sporting Braga (Sunday, 2:15 p.m. ET).
But the biggest game of the weekend in the Primeira Liga involves Raul Jimenez's Benfica, who welcome Sporting Lisbon to the Estadio da Luz (Sunday, Noon ET).
Jimenez didn't have his best game as Benfica lost 2-1 away to Galatasary in the Champions League on Wednesday, but Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez did manage to net two goals for his team Bayer Leverkusen in its 4-4 tie against Roma on Tuesday.
Hernandez will be looking to capitalize on that in the Bundesliga, with Bayer Leverkusen taking on Stuttgart on Saturday (9:30 a.m. ET) in the BayArena.
Down in Italy, the challenge is once again on for Rafa Marquez and Hellas Verona to win their first game of the season. On Sunday, they face a tricky trip to Sampdoria (6:30 a.m. ET), needing a victory if they are to move out of Serie A's relegation zone.
Finally, in the Netherlands, Andres Guardado, Hector Moreno and PSV will seek to maintain the pressure on leaders Ajax away at FC Twente (Saturday, 1:45 p.m. ET). PSV are currently in third place in the league, four points behind Ajax and Feyenoord.
Tom Marshall covers Liga MX and the Mexican national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @MexicoWorldCup.