Manuel Veth –
Jürgen Damm is one of the most interesting names of Liga MX. A 24-year-old winger, who can play both on the right and on the left side, Damm has recently won the Apertura—Liga MX crowns an opening champion (Apertura), and closing champion (Clausura)—with his club Tigres UANL. This set of events has surprising received a lot of betting attention from the people who have accounts at the esports betting sites, as the matches came with quite some interesting odds.
Signed from league rivals CF Pachuca for €8.5 million in the summer of 2015, Jürgen Damm has long been considered a prospect who could make the transition to European football. Born in Tuxpan to a middle class family, Jürgen Damm holds a German passport, and at one point was even eligible to play for the German national team—he has since been called up to represent Mexico, however.
Jürgen Damm has German heritage
Damm’s grandfather immigrated to Mexico from Berlin, and Damm actually learned German in school while growing up in Guadalajara, and has even given interviews to German media. His connection to Germany has also meant that the winger has frequently been linked with a move to the Bundesliga. When speaking to the German station NTV in August 2015, Damm said, “I would be very excited to play in Europe, and in the Bundesliga in particular. The league is one of the best in the world.”
Mexicans of course have a long tradition in the Bundesliga, ever since VfB Stuttgart won the German championship with two Mexican national team players—Pavel Pardo and Ricardo Osorio—in 2007. Currently, Bayer Leverkusen’s Javier Hernández, better known as Chicharito, and Eintracht Frankfurt’s Marco Fabián are superstars in the Bundesliga.
In fact, both Fabián and Chicharito have become key players in the Bundesliga’s attempt to establish the competition on the television market in North America. The popularity of the Mexican game in the United States therefore means that Mexican players continue to attract the interest of major Bundesliga teams.
Of course it does not hurt that Mexican football and Liga MX, in particular, are on the rise. With eleven million Mexican immigrants living in the United States, the Liga MX is the most watched football league in the US and easily outmuscles the likes of the English Premier League.
Mexicans provide star power to their respective leagues
It is, therefore, no surprise that the Bundesliga has a long established business plan in which they try to promote games that involve Mexican players in the United States. When the Futbolgrad Network attended the Florida Cup last year, the impact that Chicharito’s presence had on the local media was astounding.
It is, however, unfair to limit the value of Mexican players just to their media impact. Although Chicharito has struggled of late, he remains a star for Bayer Leverkusen, and the same is true for Marco Fabián, who was recently voted the third best attacking midfielder in the league by kicker magazine. With the Mexicans’recent success, it is no surprise that Bundesliga teams are now linked with a move for Jürgen Damm.
Back in 2015, Roma were interested in signing the incredibly fast winger, who was clocked at 35.23 kilometres per hour in a Liga MX game, but Tigres managed to outbid the Serie A club to sign the then 22-year-old Mexican winger. At the time, Damm felt that a move to Europe was too early.
Now, however, Damm feels that the moment has come to make the move to Europe: “Tigres has been a great place to establish myself in the Mexican national team.” He also added, “There have been offers, but the right one has not been among them—yet it is my dream to go to Europe. I hope that I can show what I can do at the Confederations Cup, and that after the summer I can move to Europe.”
Jürgen Damm is a fast and crafty winger
In addition to his speed, Jürgen Damm is a crafty winger, who is brave in front of the goal. He is not afraid to take on people in tight spaces, and he has shown a willingness to shoot or play a dangerous ball. His speed has already been mentioned, and it is an asset that makes him dangerous on breakaways.
Some of these skills were on display at the wild Liga MX Apertura final against CF América where Damm’s cross led to a last minute equalizer that sent the game into penalties—where Tigres secured the Mexican championship. Those who have seen the match do not doubt that Damm is ready to play in Europe, as he is is able to perform when it matters most.
It will, therefore, be interesting to see what the next step will be for the talent, who could be a perfect fit for a Bundesliga team that wants to add skill and speed to their attacking play.
Manuel Veth is a freelance journalist, writer for Bundesliga.com, and podcaster for WorldFootballIndex.com. He is also a holder of a Doctorate of Philosophy in History from King’s College London, and his thesis is titled: “Selling the People’s Game: Football’s transition from Communism to Capitalism in the Soviet Union and its Successor States”, which will be available in print soon. Originally from Munich, Manuel has lived in Amsterdam, Kyiv, Moscow, Tbilisi, London, and currently is located in Victoria BC, Canada. Follow Manuel on Twitter @homosovieticus.