Pumas are the only club to have won back to back league championships, since the start of the short-season format, and according to Juan Francisco “Gatillero” Palencia the UNAM Club now fancy their chances of repeating that feat.
“We have already
enjoyed the Clausura championship, we lived it with great intensity,
and now it’s time to turn the page and defend the title because in
Pumas the league championship is always a demand,” boasted a confident
Palencia during a Pumas press conference.
Pumas beat Pachuca in the Clausura 2009 final, which was a bit
unexpected. Pachuca and Toluca each seemed destined for a title matchup
but Pumas instead prevailed.
“We have everything to have another good tourney because our ambition is very big,” added team captain Leandro Agusto.
What won't set in is satisfaction.
“Just because we won the league championship last season does not
mean that this year we will take a break. On the contrary, we now have
more responsibilities and winning the championship is always demanded
in this institution,” said Palencia.
Now, Pumas will have more of a target than they do already.
“Teams are always looking to defeat Pumas and now that we are champions
that situation is magnified but Pumas always tries to play one hundred
percent, and does not hold back, we are also used to teams playing
against us at one hundred percent,” said the former Chivas USA player.
Palencia also admitted that although the club officials do not pressure
them to repeat as champions that is still their mentality.
“They do not pressure us to win the league title but our mentality is
to win the championship," he said. "“The team can not be pressured to
be champions even though that what we look and work for and right now
we have that mentality,” said Leandro of Pumas current condition.
“Winning a second league title will be the consequence of the work we
do during the tourney, we have to have big ambitions for that, and that
should not be something that is turned into pressure.”
Still, first things come first. For Pumas, that first step is to reach the final eight.
“Our first objective will be to qualify to the playoffs and score
as many points as possible. We have maintained the same group of
players which is very important because we know each other very good
and that will help us have a good tourney,” concluded Leandro.
Joel Aceves, Goal.com
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