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Gringo Report: Castillo motivated by fresh start at Tijuana

GUADALAJARA, Mexico – It's a new club and a fresh start for American left back Edgar Castillo, who with Mexican Primera División side Club Tijuana from Club América last week and is ready to make the most of it.

In his introductory press conference held in the border city on Tuesday, Castillo spoke of his intention to regain his past form and return to the US national team.

“I'm motivated ... to return to my national team, to get back to being the player I was when I played in Santos,” the 25-year-old said when he was officially introduced as the team's newest acquisition.

The Xolos – who are in a relegation dogfight come next May – are Castillo's sixth club in Mexico, and the Las Cruces, N.M., native is aiming for big things.

“Why not aspire to the playoffs, or even to be champions?” he asked. “Why not?”

The US international thanked the club for giving him the chance after a turbulent and injury-plagued six-months at Club América, his second stint with that club. He added that he was drawn to Tijuana because of the support.

“I've watched Club Tijuana games and the stadium is always full,” acknowledged Castillo. “I hope, along with my teammates, to be able count on that same support.”

Club Tijuana sporting director Ignacio Palou was direct in telling Castillo that he has to work hard to earn a place in the lineup and that he has to be 100 percent focused on the job at hand.

“He is conscious that he has to get back to the level he was at,” Palou told MLSsoccer.com on Thursday. “He has the ability to achieve great things, without a doubt.”

Tom Marshall covers Americans playing in Latin America. He can be reached via tom.marshall.mex@gmail.com.