Omar Campos is quickly becoming a figure to watch in Liga MX.
The 20-year old first joined Santos Laguna in 2016, forming part of the club’s academy before making his professional debut under manager Guillermo Almada a year later. He came on as an 85th-minute substitute, replacing Juan Ferney Otero as Santos held the 2-0 victory.
He has since gone on to record three goals in 65 appearances, becoming an integral part of the team.
“Santos is like my home. I took a great affection for it because it was the one who saw me grow, to develop, and taught me many things. The team gave me my professional debut, under Profe Almada, and I am very grateful to him,” he said exclusively to 90min.
“Club Santos has been very special for me. It is nice to be here in the Laguna. I am very content, and happy with the team.”
When he first arrived, Campos played as a designated winger but the club’s academy saw a different potential. He slowly transitioned into a left back, working in new ways to stand out and compete with the team’s seniors.
Santos Laguna’s academy has recently produced great left backs, training Ajax’s Jorge Sanchez and K.R.C. Genk’s Gerardo Arteaga before the two made their jump to Europe.
“From the basic forces they have you working hard in training and in the gym. In fact I was not a left back at all, I arrived as a winger and out of nowhere I was given the opportunity for left back, and I made the most of it to continue playing,” he said to 90min.
The jump to left back untapped immense potential in the young player, propelling him to secure a slot in the team’s starting lineup. His constant involvement has inspired Santos Laguna to a successful 2022 Liga MX Apertura campaign, reaching fourth in the table with 30 points and a record of 9W-4L-3D.
Campos managed one goal and two assists, among several strong defensive performances. But the player credits the team’s unity for the recent triumphs.
“We are doing a good job in the tournament. As a team we are very united, and with the proposal and mentality of going for the championship. At the beginning of the season we were many individuals, but now we are a united team. We are all on the same path and it is something that has helped us a lot in this tournament.”
The team has one regular-season match left before turning their focus to the postseason. With a victory on Sunday, Santos can secure a third place slot on the table and the home playoffs match that comes with it. For now, the club has qualified directly into the quarterfinals.
While Campos expressed his desire to reach the final and lift the cup with Santos, the dream to play in Europe remains.
“My dream has always been Europe, like Arteaga and Sanchez. I have that illusion, and that dream of playing there.”
He currently stands as one of the most expensive young players in the league, valued at an estimated $5m. Rumors emerged during the past transfer window of a possible move abroad, and though Campos revealed offers did arrive, nothing was cemented.
“I did have some offers, but nothing very formal. Many proposals were mentioned to me but right now I am focused on Santos. And what comes next, let’s see what happens but right now I’m with the team to death and we’re going for the championship.”
The current goal remains: lift the Liga MX trophy.
“Right now, I aspire to give good results with Santos, to give my best in each game to reach the final and win the championship, which is the most beautiful thing.”