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America's Rodriguez wins Liga MX Balon de Oro

Herculez Gomez explains why the new Leagues Cup is a first step toward more direct competition between MLS and Liga MX.

Club America midfielder Guido Rodriguez was awarded the 2019 Liga MX's Balon de Oro award on Saturday, given to the league's top player.

The Argentina international beat a list of stars such as fellow countryman Rogelio Funes Mori of Monterrey and French striker Andre-Pierre Gignac of Tigres UANL. 

Rodriguez also took home about the award for the league's top defensive midfielder. He was a pivotal stalwart for the Mexico City giants, who won the 2018 Apertura final and the 2019 Clausura's Copa MX. 

Leon coach Igancio "Nacho" Ambriz won coach of the year after leading the club to the top of the 2019 Clausura table before losing to Tigres in that final.

Gignac, who won the Balon de Oro in 2016, didn't go home empty handed as he was voted the league's top forward. Funes Mori won goal of the year for his stunning bicycle kick against Santos Laguna earlier this year in league play.

Other winners on the night included America's Agustin Marchesin for best goalkeeper, Leon's Angel Mena (offensive midfielder), Veracruz's Sebastian Jurado (newcomer), and Cruz Azul's Pablo Aguilar (defender).

Former Mexico great Enrique Borja, who played at the 1966 and 1970 World Cups, was honored with a lifetime achievement award. 

The awards ceremony was held at the Orpheum Theater in Los Angeles, with the voting done by league executives, coaches, players, and fans through an online poll. 

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