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 By Tom Marshall

Mexico's Rodolfo Pizarro joins Monterrey from Chivas

Sebastian Salazar and Herculez Gomez reflect on Rafael Marquez's contributions to El Tri and how he might fit into Juan Carlos Osorio's World Cup plan.

GUADALAJARA, Mexico -- Chivas forward Rodolfo Pizarro has signed for fellow Liga MX side Monterrey, confirmed Chivas sporting director Francisco Gabriel de Anda on Sunday.

Pizarro, who scored 15 times in 56 appearances for Chivas, missed out on the World Cup with El Tri, but was a key figure in Chivas winning the 2017 Clausura Liga MX title and the CONCACAF Champions League last April and is considered one of the best Mexican players in Liga MX.

"[I want to] inform you that the sale of Rodolfo Pizarro to Monterrey is official," Gabriel de Anda said of Pizarro, who joined the club in January of last year. "We said before, the possibility was there and the offer from Europe was a long way from what we wanted."

Pizarro's absence from the Mexico squad ahead of Russia 2018 was one of the main talking points after coach Juan Carlos Osorio named his initial squad.

The 24-year-old joins his former Pachuca manager, Diego Alonso, who replaced Antonio Mohamed as head coach at Monterrey last month. Russia-bound Mexico international Jesus Gallardo also signed for Rayados from Pumas last week.

Gabriel de Anda denied that coach Matias Almeyda would be leaving the club and stated the club does not plan to replace him, vehemently denying reports that the Argentine had been forced out and that Mauro Camoranesi had been approached about the job.

"There's been no change," said Gabriel de Anda. "There coaching staff is due to return on [June] 8 or 9 and isn't in Guadalajara because it doesn't have to be."

Almeyda had posted an Instagram statement last week indicating he would explain his situation shortly, but giving no guarantees that he would be staying on.

"Fans and players, thanks for so many shows of affection, soon I will release a statement explaining how things are going," he wrote. "Always remember what I told you about the Bushido code."

The Bushido code relates to the Japanese samurai honor code about moral values.

If Almeyda does leave Chivas, the former River Plate midfielder would likely be a candidate for the Mexico national team job, should Juan Carlos Osorio leave after the World Cup.

Tom Marshall covers Liga MX and the Mexican national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @MexicoWorldCup.

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