GUADALAJARA, Mexico – Jose “Gringo” Torres started Jurgen Klinsmann’s first three games in charge of the US national team, but has since slid down the pecking order, last featuring back in September.
The absence hasn’t sat well with the Texan, who is determined to take his Gold Cup call-up with both hands.
“Returning to the national team is something I was hoping for, thanks to God for giving me the opportunity in the Gold Cup,” Torres told reporters in Mexico City. “I’m happy and hungry to do well in the tournament.”
While his club form at Tigres UANL was excellent for the majority of the Liga MX’s Clausura tournament, Torres has really struggled to find his feet with the national team.
Klinsmann seems to appreciate Torres’ technical skills, but hasn’t quite worked out how to use him, usually resorting to putting him on the left wing.
“The national team is something we all aspire to,” added Torres. “[I want to] demonstrate to the coach that I’m capable of big things and reaching the World Cup.”
In terms of where he is at physically, the Tigres squad started its preseason training on June 17 and Torres says he’s in good condition.
“The good thing is that I worked for a week before the call-up,” Torres said. “I think I’m physically well and now the Gold Cup is coming, I’m going to keep working, try to do well and reach the final.”
Tom Marshall covers Americans playing in Latin America for MLSsoccer.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.