MEXICO CITY – Michael Orozco Fiscal has been on the fringe of the US squad since 2008. But now back on the inside, he is looking to produce a standout performance against Mexico on Wednesday (8 pm ET, ESPN2, live chat on MLSsoccer.com) to cement future call-ups.
“It's a chance to prove that I can be part of this team,” Orozco Fiscal told MLSsoccer.com before Tuesday's practice at Estadio Azteca. “If I get the chance to play five minutes or 90 minutes, I'm going to do it with all my heart and give it all.”
With only three central defenders selected in the squad by head coach Jurgen Klinsmann, the San Luis defender is in line for minutes, perhaps even a start, and comes into the game off a run of good form at the start of the Apertura championship in the Liga MX.
Orozco Fiscal knows what playing at Estadio Azteca is all about, after five years in Mexico's first division, and realizes the atmosphere is likely to be intense. The way to counteract it, he believes, is for the US to focus on their own game.
“We have to try to put them under pressure,” he said. “They're at home but we've got to do our thing and worry about us.”
Although Orozco Fiscal's parents were born in Mexico, he says they have always been fully supportive of his decision to play for the United States. Even so, the 26-year-old doesn't deny that running out at the Azteca to play against Mexico will be a special milestone in his career.
“To be honest, I'm very excited and honored to get a chance to play here in the Azteca against Mexico,” he said. “Not a lot of people do it, but we haven't got that win and hopefully we can do that tomorrow and make history.”
Tom Marshall covers Americans playing in Latin America for MLSsoccer.com. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.