Photo from Eurosport
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Steve Goff of the Washington Post is reporting that Jose Francisco Torres, a budding superstar in the FMF for Pachuca a club that has been the most successful in the CONCACAF region over the past several seasons has decided less than one month short of his 21st birthday to play for the United States instead of Mexico. This is a massive development for the US National Team.
For all my criticism on air of both Sunil Gulati and Bob Bradley this is a massive coup. Torres has played a key reserve role for Pachuca not only in FMF matches but also in the CONCACAF Champions Cup, which Pachuca won in 2006 and 2007. Torres is left footed and very good with the ball at his feet: his addition to the US squad instantly improves a lackluster midfield attack, and quite possibly relegated Freddy Adu to the sidelines for the foreseeable future. While I certainly would hope this is not the case, as my CSRN American Soccer Show co-host believes Bob Bradley “hates Freddy Adu,” and Torres is certainly a more acceptable, and technically gifted replacement for Adu than anyone currently in the US pool.
Torres is one of three Mexican-Americans who have now opted to play for the United States instead of Mexico: he is certainly the most accomplished of the group which now includes Michael Orozco and Sammy Ochoa. Torres is the only one of the three, I could have realistically seen playing for Mexico. A big coup for US Soccer, and a job well done to Bob Bradley and whomever helped make this happen.