No Excuses

It only took 50 games, but a US team finally won in Mexico. Let the record show that FC Dallas beat Pumas Universidad, 1-0, at the Estadio Olimpico in Mexico, DF. It will not show that it was Pumas B or Pumas Morelos, or anything else but Pumas UNAM, the reigning Mexican League Champions.

And that's exactly how it should be interpreted. The Texanos were the better team and deserved the win.

Pumas is playing in the CCL for the third time. In their two previous appearances, they did the same thing: let the kids play. It's what they do; it's who they are. They advanced to the knockout both times, and both times their philosophy did not waiver. Let the kids play. They never made it past the semis.

As a Pumas fan, it is a little frustrating. It would be nice to see the club take the event a little more seriously. But then again, it gives fledgling professionals, like Pablo Barrera and Javier Cortes, a chance to log valuable minutes they weren't getting in the local league against good competition. It worked out pretty well for them, and I expect it will do the same for Diego de Buen, Carlos Orrantia, and David Izazola, who will be re-joining the squad now that their participation in the U20 World Cup has nearly come to an end.

I do advocate giving young players minutes, so careful what I wish for. If you want to be a Pumas fan, understand it's part of the deal.

This is who Pumas UNAM is in the CCL. They still wear the gigantic crest on the front of the shirt. They still are expected to acquit themselves to the best of their abilities. It's not a B team, or the second division team, it's Pumas. And Pumas got beat at home in the group stage by FC Dallas, thus raising the US winning percentage in Mexico to 2%. That's how history will remember it, and that's exactly how it should be remembered.