York United add Mexican youth international Oswaldo Léon

York United FC announced on Tuesday that the club has signed Mexican defender Oswaldo Léon.

The 24-year-old boasts some impressive experience, having signed with Club América as a teenager and blossoming in their youth setup. The most successful club in Mexico, Las Águilas play their home games at the iconic Azteca Stadium and it was there – in July, 2018 – where León made his professional debut in a cup clash with Club Deportivo Veracruz.

Under the tutelage of legendary football figure Miguel Herrera, León went on to make another three appearances in the tournament that season, starting the knockout round game against FC Juarez and keeping his nerve in an enthralling and exhaustive sudden-death penalty shootout that América ultimately lost 11-10. Still, as a raw and developing player, he had made a firm statement of intent.

In 2019, he was loaned to Club Atlético Zacatepec in the country’s second tier to get more minutes and he made 14 appearances, including four starts in Copa MX against heavyweights Pachuca and Atlas. In 2020, there was another loan deal – this time an even more impressive one. At Cancún FC, there were 21 appearances as León established himself as a crucial figure within the side. In 2021, his long stint at Club América came to an end as he signed for Tiaxcala in the second tier. There was another move the following season and León switched to Venados, while most recently he’s been Dorados Sinaloa. In total, León has managed 133 senior appearances and over 10,000 minutes of action.

He has featured prominently at underage level for his country too, starting all three FIFA Under-20 World Cup games in 2019: against Italy, Japan and Ecuador. The previous year, he was part of the Mexico squad that made it to the Concacaf Under-20 Championship final. In total he started four times, including the decider against the United States, even registering an assist along the way.

“We’re excited to bring Oswaldo to the club and he was a priority for us over the past few months,” says York head coach Martin Nash.

“He’s a a left-footed centre-back with good experience and pedigree, a solid defender with the ability to play out from the back. He’s a commanding and resilient presence but there’s a calm and composure to his game and a comfort on the ball. He’s still a young player but there’s a ton of impressive game-time that he brings to the table. He’s hungry and determined, that kind of attitude goes a long way. I’m delighted to get him and he’s going to be a wonderful addition to the group.”