The Clausura and the rumors of squad additions and subtractions that commenced shortly after are now behind us thanks to the beginning of the Apertura 2011. One of the more intriguing fixtures of the opening weekend is the "birds" match between Club America and Queretaro FC.
Both teams had a pretty busy summer and made additions to their respective squads, hoping to ignite some push towards their goals, whether those goals are winning the title or avoiding relegation. Perhaps the most known addition was that of ex-Santos forward Christian Benitez making his way to Coapa for a massive $10+ million fee. On the other hand, Queretaro added the well known Adolfo "Bofo" Bautista to their lines, though unfortunately it seems as if an injury will keep him from making his first start for Los Gallos Blancos. You can read a bit more about each squad in our Previews: Club America, Queretaro FC.
Carlos Reinoso and company will look to finish what they started during last season; the semifinal loss to Morelia left a very bitter taste in the mouth of all of the people involved with the club. Morelia exploited America's weaknesses and Reinoso said he used that as the perfect example to show him what he needed to fix. With that came the addition of one of Mexico's most consistent defenders, Paul Aguilar. On top of Aguilar's acquisition they brought in Jesus Molina who can play in many different defensive positions, while USA's Edgar Castillo returned from loan.
Club America had a productive pre-season overall, in terms of players coming in and good preseason matches; their only loss came against the EPL's Manchester City. Aside from the Manchester City match, they looked like the offensive-minded squad they are known to be, but you can quickly tell that Reinoso isn't going to make the same mistakes as last year and think that the offense can just outscore every team week-in and week-out.
As for Queretaro, they added Adolfo Bautista, Israel "Jagger" Martinez, Israel Lopez and goalkeeper Liborio Sanchez --just to mention a few -- In what has quickly become the joke in Mexico, they call Queretaro "Las Aguilas Blancas," which translates to "White Eagles." This is an attempt at a joke since a good amount of ex-Club America players make their way to the near city of Queretaro.
Los Gallos Blancos will have America as their first hurdle on the way to save themselves from relegation, which is their first and main goal and all players that came in are well aware of that fact. They have put together a very experienced but very old squad, which in the end can be their biggest fault. Most of the players that were brought in were irregulars in their previous squads --especially their ace "Bofo" Bautista-- and will come to Queretaro to try and keep this squad in Mexico's Primera, a pretty huge task for players of this age.
On top of of being the underdog, and for every reason, Queretaro has to also go against history itself; Club America has had Queretaro's number as of late, scoring 10 goals and allowing just one in their last three matches. The last time they met at the Estadio Azteca, America won 3-1 and the time before that it was that 6-0 thumping when current manager Carlos Reinoso was on the receiving end while coaching Queretaro FC.
Although a very nice business relation keeps the clubs tied, speaking in terms of sports, they are on opposite sides of the spectrum and with very different arsenals at their dispense. Nonetheless, if you like to see a good amount of goals, be sure to tune in as these teams never fail to play a very open match against each other. Worst case --or best case scenario for some-- we get to experience Bofo end his goal drought chart on our site.