After his signing with Salernitana of Italy became official, Guillermo Ochoa became the oldest Mexican player to emigrate to Europe either for the first time or for a return.
Ochoa fulfilled his dream of playing in European soccer in 2011 when he signed with Ajaccio from France. After eight years, he also went through Málaga, Granada, from Spain, and Standard Liege, from Belgium, he returned to Liga MX with America in 2019.
After three and a half years and playing in the Qatar 2022 World Cup, Ochoa returned to Europe with Salernitana from Serie A at the age of 37 and 5 months to set the record.
Before Memo, the oldest player was Hugo Sánchez, who returned to the old continent twice after conquering Spain with five Pichichis with Atlético de Madrid and Real Madrid.
In 1993, after a year in America, he returned to La Liga with Rayo Vallecano at the age of 35 and 1 month, and in 1995 he signed with FC Linz of Austria at the age of 37 and 2 months after a season with Atlante.
Israel Castro was surprised in third place in 2016, after playing for Pumas, Cruz Azul, and Chivas, he emigrated to European soccer for the first time by signing with CD Toledo of the third division of Spain at the age of 35 years and 7 months. He served at the club for two years and in 2018 he retired.
The fourth on the veteran list is Rafael Márquez who, after being a two-time Liga MX champion with León and after an excellent performance in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, had the opportunity to return to Europe with Hellas Verona in Serie A at the age of 35 years and 5 months. The Kaiser of Michoacán had left the name of Mexico at the top with brilliant performances in Monaco and Barcelona.
Sergio Almaguer closes the top 5 at 33 years and 3 months old when in 2002 he signed with the Turkish Galatasaray after standing out at Cruz Azul, although his dream barely lasted a semester and he returned to La Máquina.
Honorable mention for Jared Borgetti who, at 32 years and 11 months, became the first Mexican player to play in the Premier League after joining Bolton, a team in which he lasted one season and then left for Al-Ittihad in Saudi Arabia.
MOST VETERAN MEXICAN PLAYERS MIGRATE TO EUROPE
- Guillermo Ochoa (Salernitana from Italy): 37 years and 5 months
- Hugo Sánchez (FC Linz of Austria): 37 years and 2 months
- Israel Castro (CD Toledo of Spain): 35 years and 7 months
- Rafael Márquez (Hellas Verona of Italy): 35 years and 5 months
- Hugo Sánchez (Rayo Vallecano of Spain): 35 years and 1 month
- Sergio Almaguer (Galatasaray of Turkey): 33 years and 3 months
- Jared Borgetti (Bolton of England): 32 years and 11 months
- Pável Pardo (Stuttgart of Germany): 30 years and 7 months
- Guillermo Mendizábal (Rayo Vallecano of Spain): 30 years and 9 months
- Manuel Vidrio (Osasuna of Spain): 29 years and 11 months