Scratched and humiliation. Striped and pride. It has already become a habit. Monterrey is one of the most ridiculed teams in Mexico, but they, in their desire for greatness, continue to think that they are a king without a crown, a fearsome team that loses for inexplicable reasons. The last of his executioners was the modest but effective Atlético de San Luis, a team that has a $45 million advantage in terms of squad value.
And if something is clear in each scratched failure, it is that the Monterrey fans like to humiliate themselves. This is made clear by the video of a follower who called Atlético San Luis a “magic town”, a club with discipline and well managed by André Jardine, DT Olympic champion in Tokyo, who eliminated the Rayados’ constellation of stars on penalties. The shameful thing is not that they squander money and still lose, but that even defeat doesn’t serve as a lesson.
But that is precisely the problem. The gang. Monterrey, despite its constant failures, continues to live in the usual bubble: they believe they are the invincible Mexican soccer team that can do anything with money. However, tournament after tournament its big name players make it clear that the investment is worthless. It doesn’t matter how many stars they sign and the players they buy from teams with fewer resources. The outcome, each semester, is the same: frustration and disgrace.
Perhaps Rayados fans can find a cure for their complaints in the words of Jardine himself. “Football is one of the most exciting sports because of this (surprises), what counts is organization, order, what you manage to do as a team inside. Nor it is enough to have great footballers, you have to be a great team”, said the Brazilian in an interview for Clear brand.
These types of teams are a textbook, but the rich in Liga MX never want to learn. They live happily in their perfectionist world in which glory is achieved by spending without any kind of logic. It had its dose of poetry that Marcelo Barovero, a goalkeeper rejected by Monterrey a couple of years ago, saved two penalties from Vincent Janssen and Maxi Meza, two of the most luxurious purchases Rayados has made in recent years.
That arrogance has always characterized the most powerful teams, in financial terms, in Liga MX. But they have rarely validated that self-confidence on the field, which is where it really matters. In social networks it is very easy to belittle.
The return of Víctor Manuel Vucetich gave scratched fans back the mirror that reality had broken for them at the Club World Cup in February, when they were eliminated by Egypt’s Al-Ahly. They already believed themselves unattainable again for being in seventh place in the table, but “a magical town” arrived and landed them in their mediocre reality, from which they will hardly come out with the arrogant mentality that characterizes them both in victory, when they believe they are untouchable, and in defeat, when in any case they continue to underestimate whoever beat them on the field of play.
Atlético San Luis made use of a coach who less than a year ago directed Antony or Richarlison. The news was surprising at the time, since it is always rare to see technicians from that projection land in Mexico. Needless to say, the plan was masterful. The Potosinos sneaked into the playoffs after a horrific start to the campaign.
And in the volatile Liga MX, no one is safe. Pachuca had an almost perfect tournament, but they will have a motivated and enthusiastic team in front of them. San Luis wants to make it clear that they are much more than a magical town and that on the soccer field there is no wad of bills that knows how to kick a ball. For his part, Rayados will have to wait another six months to find out if his money is finally worth something.