Landon Donovan Unveiled In Front Of Thousands, Aims Hilarious Dig At USMNT
Landon Donovan has arrived in Mexico. The 35-year-old attacker (who’ll turn 36 on March 4) was officially unveiled at Club Leon’s Estadio Leon Monday night with 7,000 supporters on hand to watch the unveiling of the USMNT legend, who'll wear the No. 20 shirt for the club.
Speaking fluent Spanish, the Californian addressed the crowd in a defiant matter with regards to questions surrounding his own ability to make a difference in Liga MX.
“I’m here to play, win games and be champion,” he told supporters.
He further commented on his will to succeed in a news conference following the presentation by saying, “Being human you actually have fear of failure and that was one of the first things that came to mind. I know that if I commit myself to this there is no chance of failure so it’s incumbent on me to make sure I commit myself.
“If I come and do it halfway, I could fail. If I do it three-quarters of the way with my age, I could fail. If I do it all-in with all my heart, I won’t fail.”
After making it to the quarterfinals of the Liga MX Apertura playoffs before falling to Tigres on away goals, Leon have started brightly in Clausura play, winning their opening two matches as well as their first match in the Copa MX. The club play tonight in the Copa MX versus Cafetaleros before playing Cruz Azul on Saturday in league play. Donovan has admitted that he still needs time to gain match fitness and doesn't know when he’ll make his debut.
According to Donovan, this remarkable comeback really only began in earnest last Wednesday, when he visited Leon.
“I wasn’t at home thinking about playing,” he said. “I was watching football and loving it. But when a special opportunity comes up, you have to be open to it. When I came here I felt something very special.”
Donovan will wear the No. 20 with Leon, and he explained that decision with good humor.
“I always wanted the No. 10 shirt,” he said. “When I started with the national team Claudio Reyna used the 10 and I had to choose another and that’s why I picked the 20. It is my second favorite number. Obviously after I’d chosen (No. 20) a friend of mine sent me a text asking if it was for the dos a cero and I told him no, but it is quite funny, although it’s not that funny because now we aren’t in the World Cup!
“(The shirt number) could be a joke, but the biggest joke is that Mexico is in the World Cup and we aren’t.”