Not too long ago, Nery Castillo was a key player for the Mexican national team. His performance at the 2007 Copa America was grand and left Mexican fans salivating at the prospect of watching him guide the Mexican attack for years to come.
Then, he fell off the face of the earth. A move to Spain fell apart and Castillo remained with Manchester City. Another move, this time to Chivas de Guadalajara, also did not happen. Castillo has yet to play for City this season.
But word came out of Mexico City that Castillo would be brought back into the national team picture regardless. Castillo is set to appear in Mexico's friendly against Ecuador on Nov. 12 in Phoenix, a week before their do-or-die qualifier in Honduras.
If Castillo had stayed with Olympiakos, perhaps he would never have fallen off the national team picture. But his turbulent club career hardly left Mexico coaches any choice but to leave him out of the picture. This might not be his last chance to show what he's got but it's an audition nonetheless.
It's a bit ironic in that the first time Castillo was called up to the national team, Mexico played the U.S. in February 2007. To think that in a span of 18 months of so since then he would have gone back to Europe undecided about his national team future (remember, he was eligible for Greece and Uruguay as well), would debut for Mexico, play well in both the Gold Cup and Copa America, would switch clubs twice, fall off the picture for both club and country and now is trying to resurface for both.
After all this turbulence, banking the future on a player the likes of Castillo may not be the best thing no matter how talented he is.