With NSC only boasting two future players still in action (the remainder of the roster will come from domestic leagues), there’s just a little bit to give this week in terms of updates.
NEW SIGNING Brayan Beckeles – with CD Olimpia until January transfer window
In Continental play, you may recognize the Olimpia name as the victim of Randall Leal’s Saprissa in the Concacaf League semifinal, where Los Merengues lost 4-3 in a two-legged matchup. Beckeles didn’t make it that deep into the competition, though, suffering an injury after his team’s Round of 16 matchup with Canada’s Forge FC. He went all 180 minutes of that matchup, recording two fouls and one shot.
Olimpia won the Honduran Apertura regular season with 44 points. Beckeles played seven times with five starts, amassing 504 minutes. He scored one goal and was yellow-carded once. Zany Central American league structures mean that Beckeles’s squad advanced to the Pentagonal Round(!), in which the top five teams play an additional game against the other participants. Should Olimpia finish atop the Pentagonal, they win the Apertura outright. Otherwise, the top team faces them in a winner-take-all final. (Seriously, the structure of Central American leagues is so, so great).
Beckeles went 90 minutes in a 2-0 win against Motagua Saturday. Olimpia currently sits third in the Pentagonal, though they have a game in hand on three of the four teams in the competition.
Up next: Olimpia hosts UPFNM in the third of four Pentagonal games tonight at 7:00 p.m. CDT.
Randall Leal – with Deportivo Saprissa until January transfer window
Saprissa drew Herediano 1-1 (2-2 aggregate) in Costa Rica’s Apertura playoff semifinal. Los Morados fell in a penalty kick, when Leal was unfortunately the only of the 10 takers to miss his shot.
However, he played an incredible through ball in the first half, leading to a penalty and Saprissa’s lone goal in the contest:
Leal seemed to be a little dinged up late in regulation and extra time, and gutted through an apparent foot or ankle injury en route to playing all 120 minutes and the shootout.
Up next: With the loss, Saprissa’s Apertura campaign is completed, and so ends Leal’s time with the club. He posted a heartfelt goodbye on the Tweet Machine:
I won’t translate the whole thing, but the last paragraph says “I was, am, and will be Morado until death, and I hope for the time I complete my childhood dream with the Purple.”
To, me, “💔.”
Hany Mukhtar – with Brøndby IF until January transfer window
Brøndby fell to København 2-1 in Danish SuperLigaen play. Mukhtar started and played 57 minutes. His team held a 1-1 lead when he departed the lineup.
With losses in each of the past two games, Brøndby has slid to fourth position in the table, with just two games remaining before Denmark’s winter break (at which point he’ll have played his last match for BIF).
Up next: Brøndby hosts Midtjylland Sunday at 11:00 a.m. CDT in Danish SuperLigaen action.