GUADALAJARA, Mexico – Ever since Michael Orozco Fiscal etched his name into the history of the Mexico-US soccer rivalry with that goal against El Tri in the Estadio Azteca on Aug. 15, minutes with his Mexican club side, San Luis, have dried up.
Since the famous Azteca victory, the former Philadelphia Union center back has just one start and a total of 113 minutes playing time in the Liga MX. The tough situation facing Orozco Fiscal culminated this weekend when he didn’t make the bench for his team’s 3-2 win over Atlas in the Estadio Jalisco.
“Since I scored, I haven’t played regularly, I don’t know if there is something wrong with that,” Orozco Fiscal told MLSsoccer.com in a Guadalajara hotel on Saturday. “I’ve just got to fight my way back. If I get 10 or 15 minutes, I’ve got to work hard and prove that I can be a starter again.”
But despite the frustration and press reports saying he's angling for a move back to MLS, the Southern Californian isn’t ready to ditch the team that handed him his professional debut in 2006.
“With MLS, I would go back, but I don’t think now is the right time,” he said, pointing out that his experience with the Union was very positive. “I’m happy out here."
Orozco Fiscal is clearly linked sentimentally to San Luis – “I debuted here, it’s my first team and I love San Luis a lot” – but he is also fully aware that national team call-ups will be scarce unless he is getting playing time with the club, something that is driving him to get back up the pecking order for the recently renamed Reales.
“It’s hard because the team is playing good, but when I get the chance I just need to maintain it like I have in the past,” he stressed. “These obstacles bring out the best players’ attitude and that’s what I have to do.”
Tom Marshall covers Americans playing in Latin America for MLSsoccer.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.