Mexican Soccer

Arriola earns first start for Tijuana in CCL draw vs. Firpo

PaulArriolaClubTijuana1-LAFirpoCCL (MexSport)


Based on recent performances, it should come as no surprise that midfielder Paul Arriola earned a place in the starting lineup for Club Tijuana on Tuesday night.

For the first time in his career since signing professional terms this summer with Xolos, Arriola took the field from the start, playing all 90 minutes in a 0-0 draw with LA Firpo of El Salvador in their CONCACAF Champions League debut match. Arriola had one shot on target, which was easily saved five minutes before the half.

The Chula Vista, California native joined U.S. Men’s National Team members Edgar Castillo and Joe Corona in the Xolos starting lineup, with fellow American Greg Garza entering in the 83rd minute off the bench.

So far this season, Ariolla has two assists in two appearances off the bench in Liga MX, while he has also been part of the 18 but didn’t feature on one other occasion.

Here’s the match highlights from CONCACAF (after the jump):

  • Colin in MT

    It’s tough to see MLS lose out on guys who came up in our academies. MLS should up the number of homegrown players who don’t count against the cap


    • Old School

      In the end, it wasn’t for lack of effort if I recall correctly. Arriola simply wanted to play closer to his family, apparently, and chose Tijuana.

      I could be completely wrong about that, however. I believe there was an article about his selection.

      Speaking of selections….he IS applying for Mexican citizenship for club purposes. It’ll be interesting, when the day comes, which “side” he chooses.


      • DaveW

        He is already a Mexican citizen. Azteca America announcers mentioned his father is Mexican, so he has citizenship by that route. Garza, Joe Corona, Edgar Castillo, and Herc Gómez are all playing as Mexican citizens, as are Bornstein, JF Torres and Michael Orozco.
        Having both Mexican and US citizenship through a parent or through having been born there just gives young players opportunities they might not get if the Mexican clubs had to use a foreign player spot for them.
        Btw, I checked a match report on the Mexican league web site and found the five allowed foreign players on Tijuana are Javier Gandolfi, Pablo Aguilar, Cristian Pellerano,Darío Benedetto and Fidel Martínez.


      • Socom 2

        Actually there is a limit of academy players (24 i think) and they also couldnt offer the amount that xolos did.


    • Edwin in LA

      That will be better addressed once the new Collective Bargaining Agreement is put in place and the league sees a considerable, at least 2 million if not doubling it (or more) at an increase of 3 million as it is JUST under 3 million right now. If they can bring that Salary Cap to 6 million or 6.5 or even better 7 hey the Sky’s the limit right? Even at 7 million and the current 3 DPs…or even if they do indeed raise it as some have suggested they should to 4 or 5…..I don’t I like to go with 4 for now….it would still keep MLS salaries pretty conservative compared to the top 5 or 8 leagues in Europe but would allow to compete way better with Mexico or places like China, Qatar and even Australia


    • Beto

      There should be no limit on how many and salary for hgp’s! If a club develops a rising star, and actually develops one!, they should be rewarded greatly


  • SD

    Is Fox Soccer still going to televise Concacaf Champions League? Or did they lose that too? I was looking for this game on Fox


    • Todd Marsch

      I’ve been wondering this too. As far as I can tell, it’s only on Fox Soccer Plus, which I don’t get. I don’t know if that’s only for these early games that conflict with the high-profile friendlies Fox Soccer is showing or if it’s only until they transition to Fox Sports (or whatever the new channel will be), but it’s certainly annoying for now.


  • Beto

    This guy seems to be a real rising star in TJ, even the mexican media is all hyped up.. Keep an eye on him USSF!


  • Dainja

    I know I’m probably too late of a reply for anyone to see this, but once Herc comes back…we could have a 5 American starting lineup:

    Castillo–Joe —-Arriola
    Garza –xx–xx—-xx–

    This has to be a Mexican League record, right?


    • Socom 2

      I dont follow liga mx and never will but i thought i read on mls.soccer that the TJ goal keeper (if hes still there) had US ties..

      Also on mls, isnt there another mexican american on there named piceno or picano ?


      • Alberto

        Yeah! As far as I know, A. Madueña and B. Piceno are both american (born) but have lived in Tijuana (as many kids do); but since they haven’t been called to any US Team (e.g., U17,U20) they still don’t count or considered..


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