Americans Abroad: Indios-Pachuca Preview
Indios face Pachuca in the first leg of the Clausura semifinals. In addition to captivating the US based FMF audience recently, Indios has also used its late season run to develop a genuine defensive option for Bob Bradley and the nation in Marco Vidal. At times American defending is comical against better opponents particalrly outside of CONCACAF, and Vidal has proven this season he can handle tough attacking opposition and also defend well in critical, must win matches.
Vidal has openly stated that he would welcome a call up to one of this summer’s tournaments, and earlier in the week I proposed he be part of the Confederations Cup squad for the United States.
Vidal will face off with American midfielder Jose Francisco Torres and Pachuca tonight. Pachuca is the closest thing we have in North America to Barcelona or Manchester United. Under Enrique Meza the club is free flowing and attack minded. The srats of the club like Gimenez, Caballero, Alvarez and Calero are among the most recognizable club footballers in this part of the world.
Besides, Indios did not score a goal from the run of play in the quarterfinal two leg victory over Toluca. But the Juarez based club defended well and created chances on counter attacks that forced Toluca to commit men to defending even in the dying minutes of the tie.
No doubt that the odds are staked against Indios but I wouldn’t count them out just yet. The first leg airs on Azteca America tonight at 8pm ET