KANSAS CITY, Kan. -- Despite already qualifying for the Olympics, the Mexico under-23s remain focused on beating Honduras in the CONCACAF under-23 tournament final, Miguel Angel Ponce insists.
"We don't have to relax just because we booked our ticket to London. This is still an important game," Ponce explained. "We want to do a nice job."
In front of a pro-Mexican crowd of over 16,000 fans, Ponce secured Mexico's 10th appearance in the Olympics with a stunning strike to give the team a 3-1 win. The left back said that he was happy to see so much support and he believes that the team benefited from the fans.
"Yeah, the fans did their job and we did ours on the field," he said.
Mexico hasn't played in the Olympics in eight years and the Chivas Guadalajara star says that the players are happy to bring their nation back into one of the top youth soccer competitions.
"We feel very happy. This was our best game for us in our short career," Ponce said.
The 22-year-old also believes that the team will continue the recent progress made by Mexico in all competitions last year. Mexico won the Gold Cup and the under-17s won the World Cup at their level.
"We're doing a great job and all of these guys are nice players. We want to keep this going," he said.
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Ponce also previewed the upcoming match against Honduras. El Tri overcame La Bicolor in a 3-0 result during the group stages. Even though the California native believes that Mexico is confident, he wants his teammates to pay attention on defense.
"They are going to try to attack us, but we just have to continue to have nice games out there."