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Sarachan: We ‘honor’ Gonzalez decision to represent Mexico

As the U.S. Men’s National Team convenes for its annual January camp, the specter of Jonathan Gonzalez’s decision to play Mexico is still looming large over the program.

The 18-year-old midfielder, who decided to play for Mexico, earlier in the wee, was an expected conversation topic when USMNT interim boss Dave Sarachan addressed the media.

“I would just say that I always would honor someone’s decision. He obviously put a lot of thought into this and frankly we have a lot of good young players in our program,” Sarachan said. “We never like to lose prospects, but if his heart is with Mexico, so be it. We still have a great group coming through with a lot of hopeful guys that when the qualifying begins and the next World Cup discussions come, we’re going to have a lot of depth.” 

Sarachan is currently in charge of senior team as U.S. Soccer waits to elect a president. He assembled a group of 15 uncapped players. Gonzalez would have been part of that collection had he been called in before his switch.


  1. I’ve coached a lot of Latin players in my time and they are indeed “different” than white or black players…Americans do it with fire and fury and intensity and effort; Latin kids tend to play to a cultural beat, feel it, make it easy, make the ball do the work.

    The best teams, I have found, do both. There are times when a kid needs to haul tail and make that lung-busting run, lay out to make that tackle, fight for the ball, and STICK IN. There are also times when a calculated pass or nifty move will do what can’t be done with twenty times the effort. And when you’re looking for that string-puller, the guy to link back to front, the guy who can “compose” and just…play, sorry, Latin players just do it better than Americans. They see it better, feel it better, it’s just…more natural.

    And it’s true for whatever reason a lot of coaches who grew up in European schools of soccer indeed don’t like the way Latin kids play. Their systems tend to look like 80’s and 90’s EPL: Route 1 soccer, hard defense, and a lot of running, and they push these kids right out. I never really understood that.

    If the USA can ever get that mix of athleticism and instinctive cultural creativity right, we’re going to be a load to stop. I do think we did undervalue this kid.

  2. This statement just doesn’t sound right to me; almost as if Sarachan is approving of Gonzalez’s move. Honor is a strange choice of word. I would have said something like, “We are, of course, very disappointed since this young man came up through the US youth ranks and we valued him highly. We believe that our program is on the rise and we will become a world power in the future and it’s a shame that Mr. Gonzalez doesn’t share our vision. We wish him the best of luck in the future”.

    • We are, of course, very disappointed by Mr Gonzalez’s decision but we understand that at this point we cannot offer him what he needs to reach his full potential as a player. As much as we would’ve liked to have him around as we begin to rebuild our system we understand that careers are short and the future uncertain. We wish him the best of luck in the future”

      • It is hilarious how awful you are at spelling but I have to respect when you throw in a million commas to try and appear intelligent… even when we all know you’re dumber than a sack of rocks and live in your moms basement, which, is, to be expected, for a, Mexican, troll.

      • Lil’ Bobby:

        SBI readers might give a crap about your posts if you would, once in a while, at least pretend to be positive about some aspect of the American soccer landscape. Your childish jabs are so predictable.

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