Tuesday, July 12, 2011

One Win Away From the Gold Medal Game

The Mexican Senior National team is one win away from the Gold Medal game at the IFAF Senior World Championship, a goal they have had their eye on since arriving. But in order to reach it, Mexico must first face the United States. Both teams enter the game 2-0, and the winner will win the first spot at in the championship game on Saturday, July 16 in Vienna, Austria. 

In the first two games, Mexico defeated Germany in a thrilling 22-15 game and then dominated the game against Australia. 

But even though all the players and coaches are focused on the mission on hand, they still are enjoying the journey. 

“It has been a great experience,” said Mexico’s assistant coach Gabriel Sanchez. “The team is enjoying the tournament. This is a one time opportunity for most of us. We are trying to enjoy it.” 

For some, this is the end of the road for their football careers and are leaving everything on the field like cornerback Roberto Silva who has had a very impressive football career including some time spent playing in NFL Europe. 

“This is my last tournament,” said Silva. “I am turning 30 this month, so this is my graduation of football. It is a pleasure to play with these guys. Six or seven I played with them for ten or twelve years. We finished college in 2005 and then we played in NFL Europe."

“I think every player wants to have a good farewell. It is hard to say goodbye to this sport, I have been playing since I was 6 years old. It is a great time being here.”

The schedule at the IFAF Senior World Championship has been grueling playing three games in six days, something both Mexico and USA are not used to doing. 

“It has been tough, but we knew it would be coming here,” said coach Sanchez. “We tried to choice great players. In the first game we played with some players and in the second game we played with others. And they were all at the same level.”

Silva explained he didn’t play as much in the second game against Australia so his body would have more time to rest. 

“I am pretty old,” joked Silva.  “And we needed to get ready for USA. It is hard to play games so close together. We play hard. Every play is like we play to die. This is war for us. And we are ready.”

Mexico enters his game with the confidence that they have a shot at beating the USA, but know it will be a difficult task.  

“USA is a great team,” said coach Sanchez.  “They run the ball good, so first we need to stop run to beat them.  “We are prepared. We know how they play. USA will play without mistakes, so we have to make sure we don’t either. I feel we have the right kind of offense that can hurt them. It will be an interesting game.”

Watch a preview video of the Mexico vs USA game...>

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