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SOCCER

Fernando Ortiz: “Our aim is to win the championship”

Club América’s technical director said that while his team won an important game, the challenge of winning the 2022 Apertura remains.

Update:
Fernando Ortiz gives directions to his players during the Clásico Nacional against Chivas in Apertura 2022.
RODRIGO ARANGUAAFP

América had good to celebrate this weekend. By beating Chivas 2-1, they completed a clean sweep of wins in all three Clásicos, after also beating Pumas and Cruz Azul earlier in the tournament. But coach Fernando Ortiz has not lost sight of the main objective and is setting the bar high - the aim is now to win the 2022 Apertura title. The Eagles have already qualified for the liguilla and top the standings.

“We are in the play-offs. The most important thing now is that we maintain our intensity, keep working and set our sights on winning the championship - that’s the most difficult thing. We have won a more than important game, now it will depend on me - it’s down to me to ensure that the players are involved in every training session, to get them in shape for the Puebla game,” Ortiz told reporters after Saturday’s victory.

Winning all three Clásicos was special, admitted the coach, “It is a very emotional feeling for everyone, not only for the players, the coaching staff, for all the fans. Today the fans behaved to the standard expected of the biggest team in Mexico, I am in no doubt about that. When we were struggling to enter the game, the fans were there, when we needed their support, the fans were there”, added Fernando Ortiz.

A few days’ ago, Ortiz declared that América is the top team in the country and he touched on the subject again after the match. “I did not want to stir up controversy, I said what I think and everyone has the opportunity to express what they want. I do not share it. All over the world, great teams are ranked based on their achievements and nothing else. It was not my intention to generate this type of debate,” he explained. “I am happy that we have been able to face five games in 15 days. The work which the physical trainer has done so they we could do that cannot be stressed enough. Maintaining this rhythm with so many games during the week is not easy. That part in particular worked well. I said I wasn’t going to make excuses regarding the games we played and I still haven’t,” he concluded.

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