The anticipated arrival of midfielder Hector Herrera draws closer by the day. Barely three months ago, Houston announced the signing of one of the most recognizable names in Mexican and international soccer. For a team that has never done anything splashy, this was a move of unparalleled proportion. It is a move that creates instant pressure on the Dynamo from a fanbase that is starving for success.
Herrera is no stranger to pressure. Playing at the international level since 2012, he has performed on some of the biggest stages. He was voted the most outstanding player of the prestigious 2012 Toulon Tournament. As a Mexican international, he has had gold draped around his neck at the 2021 Olympic Games and the 2015 CONCACAF Gold Cup Games. He was a part of the 2014 and 2018 Mexico World Cup teams among others.
Sandwiched around his international duties, he continued to excel with the top teams in the top leagues in Europe. Spending six years at Porto in Portugal, he was instrumental in a Premeira Liga title and two Supertaca Cups.
Atletio Madrid inked him to a three year contract on July 3, 2019. IN his first competitive appearance as a sub, he scored to salvage a 2-2 draw against Juventus in UEFA Champions League (UCL) game. By the time his contract expired just days ago with Atletico, he had played in more UCL games than any other Mexican born player with 47 appearances.
From La Liga MX to La Liga, Herrera has scored 28 goals in 274 appearances. The Dynamo signing was not for his goal scoring ability but it was for what you do not find in the stat box. His box to box style from one end of the pitch, his ability to distribute with precision accuracy (something Houston desperately needs) and tough play are the reasons Ted Segal and company went out and got his signature.
El Zorrito, Senor Zorro or simply HH, Herrera is expected to be the missing key to the Houston Dynamo. His arrival means a number of things for the club. The backline instantly becomes better because of his caliber of play in front of them. His arrival means Memo (Rodriguez) can play more of an attacking winger facilitating plays form the outside. His arrival means that Fafa and Sebas and Darwin better be ready to receive the ball in a most advantageous position and find the back of the net.
Houston finally has a midfielder that can create, distribute and deliver at a world class level. His arrival does not translate them into instant MLS Cup Champions but it does transform them into instant contenders.