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Eight Americans suit up for Tijuana
by Paul Kennedy, December 29th, 2013 7:45PM

TAGS:  americans abroad, mexico


[AMERICANS ABOARD] Tijuana gives a new meaning to the word "Amerijuana." Xolos rallied from three goals down after 52 minutes to tie Club America, 3-3, in a friendly game played Saturday for which they suited up eight Americans. Herculez Gomez came off the bench to set up the tying goal in the game that drew a sellout crowd of 25,000 at StubHub Center in Carson, Calif. The youngest was 17-year-old Fernando David Arce, who was born in San Diego and is the son of Tijuana midfielder Fernando Arce.

Gomez, 31, is the veteran of Tijuana's Mexican-American crew. He signed with Xolos in the summer but a knee injury slowed him down. It has taken him out of the national team picture, making him a longshot to go to Brazil 15 months after being a starter for Jurgen Klinsmann.

"Nothing's guaranteed," he told the Los Angeles Times after feeding Juan Hernandez for the equalizer in the 82nd minute. "I know that I've got to go out there and I've got to work for a spot. I've got to kind of claw my way back on to the radar."

Teenager Paul Arriola, who has moved ahead of Gomez in the pecking order in the Tijuana attack, started against America along with left back Edgar Castillo.

Joe Corona, who lost his Xolos starting job in midfield in the fall and also saw his stock on the national team fall, Greg Garza, Gomez and Arce, who was making his first-team debut and came on for his father, a Mexican international, were all substitutes.

Stevie Rodriguez and Alejandro Guido, both former U.S. U-17s, were unused subs.

Tijuana, which opens the Torneo Clausura Saturday at Atlas, will be returning to StubHub Center in March to face the Galaxy in the Concacaf Champions League.

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