Joe Corona appears destined for a big 2012 as he continues to contribute for Club Tijuana while becoming a bigger part of the U.S. national team set-up. All of that is on the heels of what was just recognized as a pretty sharp 2011.
The 21-year-old Corona won the Golden Ball as Mexico's top rookie, beating out finalists Alfonso Luna (Atlante), Armando Zamorano (Jaguares) and Hector Herrera (Pachuca) to take home the award.
Corona helped Tijuana to Mexico's top flight last spring, scoring a goal and assisting on another in the definitive playoff triumph over Irapuato. He maintained that momentum at the start of the Mexican Apertura season, scoring goals in each of Tijuana's first two games in the Primera Division. He went on to contribute as a part-time starter the rest of the way, finally catching the eye of U.S. Soccer after playing for the Mexican Under-22 national team during the summer.
Corona was not present at the Balon de Oro festivities in Mexico Monday night, as he is currently in camp with the U.S. Under-23 national team in Carson, Calif., continuing to build his case to be an integral part of the Olympic qualifying process.
What do you make of this development? Expecting big things from Corona this year?
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