"Osvaldo is not that big of a guy," says coach Sigi Schmid of his diminutive size, but "He's a very good one-on-one defender" with a tenacity in which "once he's got his hooks in you, he doesn't let you go." So where'd he come from?
Alonso excelled last year for the Charleston Battery in the USL-1, where he earned Rookie of the Year honors in 2008. Adding to the intrigue around Alonso is the fact that he made the decision to defect to the USA from Cuba following the 2007 Concacaf Gold Cup, following the path of Chivas USA striker Maykel Galindo, who sought asylum after the 2005 tournament and also made his rise to the MLS through America's minor league system. In fact, Galindo played for the USL version of the Seattle Sounders.