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SOCCER

Gold Cup night in Pasadena goes from celebration to depression after MX loss

By - Jul 25, 2017

Southern California native Cynthia Esqueda attended her first Mexico socccer game as a media member on Sunday, when El Tri lost a Gold Cup semifinal to Jamaica. She shared some thoughts and a couple of photos from the night.

 

PASADENA, Calif.- Thousands of fans were present to represent their countries' soccer teams, part of a crowd of 42,393 at the Rose Bowl to see Jamaica stun Mexico, 1-0.

Most of those fans rooted for Mexico. They brought music, flags, hats and banners in order to make their presence clear before the match. 

Children were dressed in the white, red and green jerseys of the Mexican team. 

“Mexico, Mexico, Mexico!” chants were heard around the large Rose Bowl soccer field. The excitement was clear and the joy the fanatics bring to the stadium is one of a kind.

The first half began and the crowd grew in numbers and in noise. The Mexican flag was waved all over the stadium making this match a party.

The first minutes of the game, the Jamaican team was struggling to take possession of the ball and game. Mexico had many clear options to make the score change from 0-0.

It all changed in the second half when with only a few minutes left to play, Jamaica scored on a free kick. The crowd’s noise went from loud to silent from the unexpected goal.

The Jamaican team took the victory and moved on the final stage of the road to win the Gold Cup.

The Mexican team was eliminated and the disappointment and uncertainty was audible from the crowd. The loudest and most favorite team was not the match winner, which caused the crowd to leave and end the party. 

The press conference and mixed zone, where players go after they leave their locker rooms, were filled with discomfort and discontent for Mexico. The Mexican coaches stood by to speak for the team and the athletes were unhappy for the result. Many of the athletes choose not speak to the media and press.

Interim coach Luis Pompilio Paez was asked a number of pointed questions by a media contingent that is often critical, by American standards, of the team and the management. 

Those questions included how bad a loss was it to fall to Jamaica (was it a "tragedy?"), what will go into the selection of players from this team for the World Cup, and if not having an experienced player like Alan Pulido affected them.

The players, for the most part, left the stadium with many questions unanswered, although backup goalkeeper Moises Munoz took some time to answer questions in the mixed zone. 

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