Midfielder | Colo-Colo | Chile.
One of many footballing talents born in the Chilean capital of Santiago, Gabriel Suazo has been a relative fixture in a Primera Division first-team since he was a teenager. Having broken into Colo-Colo’s first-team at the tender age of 18 back in 2015, he’s largely operated at the highest levels of his native game.
A two-time league winner with the capital giants, Suazo’s versatility across midfield and defence saw him brought into La Roja’s national side, earning one cap in 2017, though the purpose of this review is to examine his exploits in 2018, where we will start.
2018 has been
Colo-Colo struggled in 2018, making it a fairly slow year for Suazo as an individual.
Despite picking up a Supercopa de Chile title after a commanding 3-0 victory against Santiago Wanderers, El Cacique laboured to a fifth placed finish. A transitional year for Chile’s biggest club, Suazo was largely used as a utility man during his 17 league games.
Deployed across a number of positions ranging from left-back and left-midfield to central midfield, his all-action style saw him pick up five yellow cards in that campaign. Not overly exciting stuff, which probably links in with the club’s season as a whole.
He did manage to record his only assist of the year - though it is harsh to judge him on that statistic alone considering the roles in which he was deployed - during March’s league meeting away at Universidad de Concepcion, though his team did slip to a defeat.
While his league season was very much a story of Suazo plugging various holes throughout the side, he did enjoy a touch more stability as Colo-Colo took to the Copa Libertadores.
Handed a more advanced role on the left-hand side of midfield as his side looked to grind out wins rather than blow anyone apart, his defensive ability largely typified their outlook during the competition. While he was unable to prevent their exit at the hands of Brazilian side Palmeiras at the quarter-final stage, there was at least an emotional journey en route to the last eight, including an exhaustive win over Corinthians.
So, barely the most productive year for Suazo. Indeed, that was reflected in his omission from the national set-up over the course of the year. With Chile missing out on qualification for the World Cup in Russia, 2018 was a disappointing year at every footballing year for the player.
Surely, it’s going to get better for Gabriel Suazo.
Clearly a useful tool for Colo-Colo, it’d be hard to bet against a revival in the club’s fortunes going forward, as well as the Chilean national side after their World Cup heartache. If Suazo can continue to impose himself on first-team proceedings at a rejuvenated club side, there’s no reason he can’t do the same for La Roja.