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Monterrey eyeing Chelsea scalp

Monterrey were today plotting to make more "history" for Mexican football by stunning Chelsea in their Club World Cup semi-final.

Last Updated: 13/12/12 at 09:18 Post Comment

Mexico: Goal that won the olympics back in August, and Vecetich wants to create

Mexico: Goal that won the olympics back in August, and Vecetich wants to create

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The CONCACAF champions were hoping to send shockwaves through the tournament in Japan by beating the side manager Victor Manuel Vecetich hailed as "the number one club team in the world".

Vecetich declared doing so would represent an all-time high for club football in his country, in the same year Mexico produced the greatest moment in its international history by winning at the London Olympics.

Chelsea are even more overwhelming favourites to beat Monterrey at Yokohama International Stadium than Brazil were to clinch gold at Wembley this summer.

It was a similar story in 2000 edition of the Club World Cup when Manchester United were held to a draw by Monterrey's Mexican rivals, Necaxa, en route to crashing out.

Vecetich claimed a win against Chelsea would top that and become the most important club result ever in his country.

"Yes, without question," he said..

"The Necaxa game in Rio, I remember that.

"We want to make history.

"I know our rivals very well but we believe in our own strengths. I believe we can win and we will try our best."

Vecetich, who must conjure up an upset without injured star Humberto Suazo, was speaking alongside two of the heroes of Mexico's Olympic triumph, defenders Hiram Mier and Darvin Chavez.

Mier said: "The Olympics were something when our dreams came true and we've kept it going by winning the CONCACAF tournament, and now we're here hoping to be champions."

Chavez added: "Since my childhood I'd been dreaming of playing Brazil and at Wembley stadium.

"To have done that and actually won a gold medal, that was a very special moment for me."

The final saw Mexico stun Brazil, whose team included Chelsea star Oscar.

Mier said: "Outside Mexico, we are able to play a very high level of football, and that's because of the confidence we gained in London.

"In this tournament, the matches and opponents are very tough, but we want to fulfil our responsibilities and do our best."

Vecetich added: "Mexico is growing, doing very well and getting better.

"In international tournaments, in Central America, we're doing well.

"The under-17s, too, and in CONCACAF, including with Monterrey.

"So football in Mexico is doing well. This is a good opportunity to demonstrate that."

Vecetich expressed surprise that he was pitting his wits against Rafael Benitez instead of Roberto Di Matteo after Chelsea sacked their Champions League-winning manager last month.

"Yes, I was very much surprised that the coach was suddenly changed," he said.

"They'd played under one coach to win the Champions League, but he's not here. That happens in football.

"But coach Benitez is very well known and has much experience in international matches.

"So we are aware of what kind of strategies he takes into games, and we're always keeping our eyes on the international terrain of football and are pretty confident how to deal with them."

The final saw Mexico stun Brazil, whose team included Chelsea star Oscar.

Mier said: "Outside Mexico, we are able to play a very high level of football, and that's because of the confidence we gained in London.

"In this tournament, the matches and opponents are very tough, but we want to fulfil our responsibilities and do our best."

Vecetich added: "Mexico is growing, doing very well and getting better.

"In international tournaments, in Central America, we're doing well.

"The under-17s, too, and in CONCACAF, including with Monterrey.

"So football in Mexico is doing well. This is a good opportunity to demonstrate that."

Vecetich expressed surprise that he was pitting his wits against Rafael Benitez instead of Roberto Di Matteo after Chelsea sacked their Champions League-winning manager last month.

"Yes, I was very much surprised that the coach was suddenly changed," he said.

"They'd played under one coach to win the Champions League, but he's not here. That happens in football.

"But coach Benitez is very well known and has much experience in international matches.

"So we are aware of what kind of strategies he takes into games, and we're always keeping our eyes on the international terrain of football and are pretty confident how to deal with them."

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