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MEXICO CITY -- Andres Guardado had already been made out as a villain in the previous 24 hours, after some comments regarding the Olympic gold medalists had been perceived as minimizing El Tri's achievement in London.
Guardado argued that whereas the senior side has to face players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi backed by senior sides, the U-23s had not faced the strongest teams the opposing countries had to offer. Guardado's reputation was hurt further after El Tri's senior side lost against the United States at the Estadio Azteca for the first time ever.
"I don't think the United States was better than us at any moment," a defiant Guardado said after the match. "Maybe they were able to push the ball through [on the goal] and we couldn't close them down."
Even then, the Valencia winger was quick to recognize that Michael Orozco Fiscal's goal was a product of a good play by Brek Shea and Terrence Boyd, not luck. "No, there's no luck involved here. They scored their goal well," Guardado noted.
With losing at the Azteca magnified because of the opposing side, the former Deportivo La Coruña player pointed out that it was, above all, a friendly match.
"We need to wait for those important games now so that we don't have the same [mistakes] happen to us," Guardado said.
Friendly or no, Wednesday night at the Azteca will forever be remembered as the first time the Untied States was able to win in one of world soccer's holiest temples.
"It hurts. A lot. It always hurts me to lose, but when you play against the United States, we know that's a rivalry match in the area, a rivalry match to us and above all to lose to them at the Azteca, where we never had in the past. That hurts," he finished.
Brent Latham provided reporting from Mexico City.
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