Thursday, July 24, 2008

Sangre americana preview: Orozco

At the start of the Clausura 2008 season, few American soccer fans had heard of Michael Orozco. Now, though, he's become a part of the U.S. national team system and will represent the U.S. in the upcoming Summer Olympics.

And while he'll be away for perhaps one-fourth of the upcoming Apertura 2008 season, he will at some point go back ad try and reclaim a spot on the club.

A native of Orange, Calif., Orozco broke through with San Luis in the Apertura 2007 season. He started 15 of 16 games that season and logged 1,325 minutes. A season ago, Olympic qualifying and injuries limited him to 11 games - all starts.

Orozco will likely miss a minimum of four games but could be away for as many as six matches with the U.S. Olympic team. When he gets back, he may have to battle with Adrian Gonzalez Tahuilan to reclaim a starting spot. It's a fight that he should not have much problem winning.

Still, San Luis' season will plow forward without Orozco. If the club is in a good position in league when Orozco returns from China, it may initially be difficult for Orozco to win a spot back. In many ways then, San Luis' early-season success or failure might dictate how quickly Orozco gets himself back in the mix.

Potentially, Orozco's success with the U.S. Olympic team could elad to more international call-ups. Orozco could thrust himself in the mix with the senior national team, which may lead to more absences.

At some point, though, all of the international experience will benefit Orozco at the club level as he only stands to improve his play while defending his colors.


CapeCodFutbol said...

I'd love to see Orozco get into the mix for center back at the senior NT level. While I believe we'll see more of Gooch and Bocanegra in the future, legitimate competition for the position can only help -- and sadly, we're short of players that I would consider legitimate replacements for either of those spots.

Anonymous said...

Shouldn't they put americano under his nationality or put a slah then americano. Do you think he'll get a hard time from coaches and players for wanting to represent the US?

L.B. said...

I doubt his teammates or coaches will ostracize him or anything. I'm sure he's earned their respect by his play on the field and how he carries himself. If anything the front office might have a longer memory about it but not necessarily because he's American. They may take it as sort of not showing loyalty to the club. But it seems his situation is pretty stable down there as far as his club is concerned.

It would be interesting if he became a starter for the US senior team how the reception would change. I mean, could you imagine if he started for the US against Mexico in Azteca next year? That might change things up a little.

A.C. said...

Huh, I can't imagine they'd get too pissy about it if Castillo is lining up for them in the same game. Win some, lose some.