Pozuelo playing for Swansea City in 2013
|Full name||Alejandro Pozuelo Melero|
|Date of birth||20 September 1991|
|Place of birth||Seville, Spain|
|Height||1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)|
|Playing position||Attacking midfielder|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 6 October 2019|
Formed at Betis, he amassed La Liga totals of 40 matches and three goals at the service of that club and Rayo Vallecano. In 2014 he signed with Genk from Swansea City, going on to spend several seasons in the Belgian First Division A with the former team. In 2019, he joined Major League Soccer side Toronto FC.
Pozuelo made his official debut with the main squad on 2 October 2011, playing the second half of a 0–1 La Liga home loss against Levante UD. On 18 December he scored his first league goal for the Verdiblancos, as well as being sent off in the 2–0 win at Atlético Madrid.
In total, Pozuelo made 33 appearances during his tenure, scoring three goals across all competitions.
On 2 July 2013, Pozuelo joined Swansea City on a three-year contract for an undisclosed fee, signing alongside teammate José Cañas and becoming the seventh Spaniard in the squad. He scored on his debut for the club, rounding off the scoring in a 4–0 home victory over Malmö FF in the first leg of the third qualifying round of the UEFA Europa League; he netted his second in the same competition and also at the Liberty Stadium on 22 August 2013 in a 5–1 play-off round win against Romania's FC Petrolul Ploiești.
Pozuelo returned to his country's top division on 24 July 2014, joining Rayo Vallecano for an undisclosed fee. His first competitive appearance took place on 14 September, as he came on as a 61st-minute substitute in a 2–3 home loss to Elche CF.
On 31 August 2015, Pozuelo moved abroad again, signing a two-year deal at Belgian First Division A team K.R.C. Genk. He scored six goals in 2016–17, helping to a final eighth position in the regular season; he later became their captain, and collected a total of 175 appearances across all competitions over five seasons, with 25 goals and 60 decisive passes.
In February 2019, Toronto FC planned to trigger Pozuelo's €8 million release clause, however, a disagreement ensued with Genk questioning the validity of the release clause and refusing to allow the player to move. Following a lengthy transfer discussion, the two sides reached a compromise for the player to finish out the main portion of the season with the latter and join the former on 18 March. When he left, Genk were sitting in first place in the domestic league.
On 4 March 2019, Pozuelo signed with Major League Soccer side Toronto FC as a designated player, as a replacement for the recently departed Sebastian Giovinco and compatriot Víctor Vázquez in the creative midfield role, also inheriting the number ten shirt which had previously been worn by the Italian. He made his debut late in the same month in a 4–0 home win over New York City FC, assisting the opening goal of the match by teammate Jozy Altidore and later scoring two himself—one from the penalty spot Panenka-style and one chipped over the goalkeeper; he finished as the team's top scorer in the regular season with 12 goals, while also adding 12 assists.
On 23 October 2019, Pozuelo scored twice in a 2–1 win over New York City FC in the playoffs' Eastern Conference semi-finals, including a 90th minute Panenka-style penalty kick which was his third of the campaign in that fashion. On 10 November, he set up Altidore's injury-time goal in a 3–1 away defeat to Seattle Sounders FC in the MLS Cup Final.
Style of play
A diminutive, versatile, hard-working and creative midfielder, with good ball skills, technique and an eye for goal, Pozuelo usually plays in a playmaking role as an attacking midfielder, although he is also capable of playing as a central midfielder. Although naturally right-footed, he is capable of playing off of either foot, and is known for his vision and ability to provide assists for teammates. Toronto FC president Bill Manning described him as "a guy who can pull the strings, someone who can manage the game, make the special plays that make goals", while the club's manager Greg Vanney described him as "an attacking player first and foremost. We want to use him in that role. He’ll play close to [Altidore] and we’ll use him a lot in setting up our attacks. He's outstanding at understanding how to move around, manipulate numbers on the field, play between lines. [He has] the vision for the final pass and the ability to spring some of our guys as runners. But it’s also his ability to finish plays off in different ways. For us it’s the engine through that final phase of our attack.”
|Betis B||2010–11||Segunda División B||30||5||—||—||—||30||5|
|2011–12||Segunda División B||14||11||—||—||—||14||11|
|Swansea City||2013–14||Premier League||22||0||3||0||11[a]||2||—||36||2|
|Rayo Vallecano||2014–15||La Liga||11||0||2||1||—||—||13||1|
|Genk||2015–16||Belgian First Division A||21||1||5||0||—||12[b]||3||38||4|
|Toronto FC||2019||Major League Soccer||30||12||2||0||0||0||4[c]||2||36||14|
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- "KRC Genk official-kapitein Alejandro Pozuelo viert vandaag zijn 27ste verjaardag…" [KRC Genk official-captain Alejandro Pozuelo celebrates his 27th birthday today…] (in Dutch). Limburg Tube. 20 September 2018. Retrieved 12 April 2019.
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- "Vanney seeing improved work rate from Pozuelo on both ends". The Sports Network. 5 September 2019. Retrieved 12 September 2019.
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- "2019 MLS All-Star Roster". Major League Soccer. Retrieved 14 July 2019.
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