Until Tuesday, 25th April, only passionate Girona fans were familiar with Valentin ’Taty’ Castellanos, but one marvelous game and four goals against Real Madrid were enough for the 24-year-old Argentinian to make headlines worldwide. Castellanos become the first player since 1947 to score four goals against Real Madrid in the Spanish championship.
Although Valentin Castellanos was born in Mendoza, Argentina, he never played any senior football in his country. After playing as a kid for a few minor teams, Valentin Castellanos moved to the Chilean Universidad de Chile, where he played only one Copa Libertadores game in 2017.
In the summer of 2017, 18-year-old Castellanos was loaned to Uruguayan second-division team Torque, where he scored four goals in 23 matches.
Breakout Castellanos years
The decisive moment for Castellanos’ career was when New York City decided to loan a player from Torque. Although he scored only one goal in eight matches in the second part of 2018, Castellanos convinced the board to sign him on a permanent deal for more than 400,000 euros. In the next few years, signing Valentin proved to be one of the best deals for New York City as he became integral to the team’s success.
Valentin Castellanos’ performances in 2021 will stay forever in the hearts of New York City supporters as he scored 19 goals and added eight assists in the regular season to help the team qualify for the playoffs. During those playoffs, he then scored three more goals, including the goal in the final against Portland Timbers, giving New York City the first MLS title in history.
Castellanos moves to Girona
New York City, like Girona, is part of the City Football group, so a move to Girona was logical. Girona played in the second level of Spanish football last season, so they needed a prolific scorer who would help them avoid any relegation troubles this season. Castellanos didn’t have the best start in Spain, scoring only three goals in the first 14 matches. Still, he has improved incredibly in recent months, so he has 11 goals for the season, including four goals against Real Madrid on Tuesday.
Castellanos’ style of play and future
Castellanos’ biggest strength is his movement, as he understands the game well. He constantly tries to find the holes in the opponent’s defensive zones. Also, although he is only 1.78m tall, he is a great header of the ball. Performing in LaLiga, Castellanos can’t always transfer the same creativity and vision that worked in the MLS, but he is still finding ways to produce and help his team.
It seems that a move to Girona was the right move for Castellanos as he is becoming one of the most exciting strikers in Europe.
Market value during the career
Castellanos might never play for Manchester City or other footballing giants, but teams like Sevilla or Villarreal could be a realistic goal for the Argentinian.
Stats by club during the career in all competitions
Taty Castellanos fact
- MLS champion in 2021
- Highest MLS goal-scorer in 2021 with 19 goals
- MLS Best XI in 2021