American Exports: Four Yanks feature as Tijuana tune up for CCL with win over Chivas
GUADALAJARA, Mexico – Four Americans featured for Club Tijuana on Friday in their 2-0 home win over CD Guadalajara, with Alejandro Guido making his Liga MX debut.
Greg Garza started at left back and went close with a 25-yard effort in the 8th minute. The Texan had a good game in place of Edgar Castillo, who was left on the bench after his midweek jaunt to Europe with the US national team.
Joe Corona was in Tijuana’s starting XI for the first time since Jan. 10 and took advantage, displaying a good range of passing from his left midfield position and drawing a number of fouls from Chivas.
Corona cut inside regularly, looked dangerous on the ball and took the Xolos’ set-pieces.
Herculez Gomez has been in and out of the starting lineup in recent weeks and was benched ahead of the CONCACAF Champions League quarterfinal first leg against his former club, the LA Galaxy, on March 12, coming on for the last 13 minutes.
Guido (above) had a night to remember as his recent good form for Tijuana’s Under-20s – including three goals in six starts this season – was rewarded by coach César Farías with his debut in Mexico’s top division in the 84th minute.
Over in León, there was another American Liga MX debutant, with 20-year-old midfielder Dennis Flores – from Pasadena, Calif. – coming on for Mexico international Carlos Peña in the 82nd for León in their 1-0 defeat to Veracruz.
It was a much less of a happy night for Puebla’s Americans on the road against Toluca. DaMarcus Beasley – playing left wing back -- was beaten to a header at the back post by Isaac Brizuela for Toluca’s first and he also picked up a yellow card for a late foul.
It wasn’t any better for Michael Orozco Fiscal, who tripped Brizuela inside the area in the 54th to give away a penalty, which Raúl Nava converted for Toluca’s second.
Beasley completed the full game, while Orozo Fiscal was brought off in the 62nd in the 3-0 defeat, which means Puebla are slowly being dragged into the relegation fight.
Tom Marshall covers Americans playing in Latin America for MLSsoccer.com. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.