Mauricio Cienfuegos

Mauricio Cienfuegos (born 12 February 1968) is a Salvadoran retired professional soccer player who played as a midfielder.[1]

Mauricio Cienfuegos
Personal information
Full name José Mauricio Cienfuegos
Date of birth (1968-02-12) 12 February 1968
Place of birth San Salvador, El Salvador
Height 5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)
Playing position Attacking midfielder
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1985 Racing Junior
1986–1987 Soyapango
1988–1991 Luís Ángel Firpo
1991–1992 Morelia 37 (3)
1992–1993 Santos Laguna 18 (0)
1994–1995 Jaibos Tampico Madero
1994–1996 Luís Ángel Firpo
1996–2003 Los Angeles Galaxy 206 (35)
National team
1987–2003 El Salvador 68 (8)
Teams managed
2008 Nejapa
2011– Los Angeles Galaxy (academy)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Club career

Cienfuegos began his professional career in 1985 with Racing Junior. He played the next two seasons for Soyapango, and then moved to Luís Ángel Firpo, where he would play for four years.

Cienfuegos moved to Mexico to play for Morelia in the 1991, and then signed with Santos in 1992. However, after just one season at Santos Laguna, Cienfuegos became unhappy with how he was being used at the club and decided to try his luck in Europe. In the summer of 1993, he had trials with Swiss champions Servette and La Liga side Lleida. Cienfuegos was close to signing with the Spanish side, but ultimately he was not offered a contract, and he returned to El Salvador.

Los Angeles Galaxy

Cienfuegos played two more seasons with Luis Ángel Firpo before joining Major League Soccer for its inaugural 1996 season. Cienfuegos played for Los Angeles Galaxy for eight years as a midfielder, from 1996 until his retirement after the 2003 season. During those years, he established himself, along with Carlos Valderrama, Marco Etcheverry, and Peter Nowak, as one of the best playmakers in the league. He was elected to the MLS Best XI three times, in 1996, 1998, and 1999, and played in seven MLS All-Star Games as a central midfielder. During his MLS career, Galaxy won the 2000 CONCACAF Champions Cup, the 2001 U.S. Open Cup, and the 2002 MLS Cup. He finished his MLS career with 78 assists and 35 goals in 206 games for the club.

International career

Cienfuegos was an important player for ElSalvador national team, joining the team as a teenager, and continuing to lead his national side well into his thirties. He has earned a total of 68 caps, scoring 8 goals, all of them during a home game. He has represented his country in a massive 32 FIFA World Cup qualification matches[2] and played at the 1995 UNCAF Nations Cup[3] as well as the 1996[4] and 1998 CONCACAF Gold Cups.[5]

Cienfuegos played his final international game in July 2003, in a testimonial match against Mexico, played at the Galaxy's Home Depot Center.

International goals

Scores and results list El Salvador's goal tally first.
123 July 1992Estadio Cuscatlán, San Salvador, El Salvador Nicaragua2–05–11994 FIFA World Cup qualification
21 November 1992Estadio Cuscatlán, San Salvador, El Salvador Bermuda3–04–11994 FIFA World Cup qualification
323 March 1993Estadio Cuscatlán, San Salvador, El Salvador United States2–22–2Friendly match
429 November 1995Estadio Oscar Quiteno, Santa Ana, El Salvador Belize1–03–01995 UNCAF Nations Cup
53 December 1995Estadio Flor Blanca, San Salvador, El Salvador Costa Rica2–12–11995 UNCAF Nations Cup
68 September 1996Estadio Cuscatlán, San Salvador, El Salvador Cuba5–05–01998 FIFA World Cup qualification
714 September 1997Estadio Cuscatlán, San Salvador, El Salvador Canada3–14–11998 FIFA World Cup qualification
816 July 2000Estadio Cuscatlán, San Salvador, El Salvador Honduras2–52–52002 FIFA World Cup qualification

Coaching career

Cienfuegos was appointed head coach of Nejapa in El Salvador's Primera División de Fútbol Profesional in 2008. Despite having a good first season, a poor start to his second season in charge and non-payment of his players led to him to resign as head coach of the team.[6] On 22 June 2011, it was announced that Mauricio Cienfuegos had been appointed as a technical coach for the LA Galaxy Academy.[7]


1988–89, 1990–91, 1991–92
(Runner-up 1997)
(Runner-up : 1996, 1999, 2001)
1998, 2002
(Runner-up : 1996, 1999)
1996, 1998, 1999
(Runner-up : 2002)

Personal life

Cienfuegos lives with his wife and three children in the San Gabriel Valley, California.[8]


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