By JOSE M. ROMERO
PHOENIX — Two big names of Mexican club soccer are coming to the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., on July 10 — 10-time Primera Division champion Club America and one of the finalists for the league's 2011 Clausura title, Morelia.
The preseason friendly for both teams will be a rematch of the Clausura quarterfinals from earlier this month. The 2010 SuperLiga champion Monarcas knocked the Aguilas out of the postseason in a two-leg playoff.
The match came to be after talks between the heads of a local club, Phoenix Monsoon, and top personnel for both Morelia and Club America. The Aguilas were slated for a friendly against Pachuca, another Mexican first division club, last summer, but both teams pulled out in the wake of anti-immigration legislation that was signed into law last April.
With several parts of the law struck down in federal courts (though Arizona's governor is appealing), the political climate improved for the teams to come to the Valley of the Sun.
"Our partnership pre-dates last year's game," Monsoon general manager Stuart Starky said. "Clearly Club America knows how important the unity is here. Last year's politics aside, they're coming here because they know the potential of the soccer market here."
Starky said Adrian Quintero, the Monsoon's director of competition, fostered the relationship with the Mexican clubs and built the match.
"The is finally the realization of all that," Starky said.
Quintero said he had to compete with major cities in California to get the match, but won out.
Club America is a traditional power in Mexican soccer and has legions of fans among Mexicans in the United States. Organizers are expecting anywhere from 25,000 fans and/or a filled lower bowl of the stadium to a sellout of around 63,000.
They're counting on a big crowd after a little-publicized MLS preseason friendly between the New York Red Bulls and Atlas of Mexico surprisingly drew 23,644 fans. The match is the same day as Major League Baseball's All-Star Sunday, to be held only a few miles east of Glendale in downtown Phoenix.
First kick is set for 5 p.m. and tickets start at $20, with the potential for discounts on tickets from sponsors of the Monsoon, an indoor and outdoor club that opens indoor play in the Professional Arena Indoor League (PASL-Pro) in November.
Holy cow! You’re right! Thanks for knowing more about myself than I.
It’s not like you would have attended either way.
Since when is Morelia a big name club, I’m sure most people in Mexico don’t even know who they are.
Neither of those “home” matches were played in the Azteca. They were both played in Queretaro. That’s really the bad luck. Other than that, they just didn’t perform.
The Mexican clubs boycotted my city/state in the past and I will now return the favor.
Will they be required to wear pink socks and underwear?
ItÂ´s youÂ´re, not your. Since you want to be correcting their articles.
america has bad luck they lost to morelia 5-3 aggregated in quarter finals. after coming from a 1-0 aggregated lost to santos of brazil and being eliminated from libertadores.
The AZ laws were anti “illegal” immigration. your welcome.