Trujillo honored to wear armband for Chivas USA

Mexican veteran named captain in absence of Kljestan, Bornstein

 

CARSON, Calif. – Replacing Sacha Kljestan and Jonathan Bornstein is no easy task, but it’s a challenge that Mariano Trujillo isn’t afraid to tackle.

The veteran defender was handed the Chivas USA captain’s armband for Saturday night’s match against Real Salt Lake, and will likely serve as the team’s stand-in leader until club co-captains Kljestan and Bornstein return from National Team duty.

“It was an honor,” said Trujillo after the Salt Lake game. “Being a captain in any team is a huge responsibility and an honor. Unfortunately for me and the team, we couldn’t reach a victory. I tried to play my best and help the team, but it wasn’t enough.”

At 33, Trujillo is one of a handful of veterans on a very youthful Chivas USA roster. The Mexican boasts 14 years of professional experience, and has won the praises of both his coach and his teammates with his consistent level of play.

“We’re happy with Mariano [as captain],” said Chivas USA head coach Martín Vásquez. “He has been our most consistent player, no doubt. He’s going to continue to show the strength that he has – he’s a very good soccer player.”

Trujillo’s stint as Chivas USA’s captain is not his first time wearing the yellow armband, having previously served as captain at Mexican First Division sides Morelia and Pumas UNAM. But although he says he is always proud to be named captain, he admits that wearing the armband doesn’t have much impact on his on-field persona.

“I don’t feel any different just because of the armband,” he said. “I’m always trying to help my teammates, whether it’s by yelling at them or running hard or whatever.”

Trujillo takes over the reigns at a tough moment for Chivas USA. The team has lost each of its last three matches and currently sits in last place in the Western Conference, but the Goats can rely on a captain that is eager to lead them back to winning ways.

“The only way that we can change the results is by staying together and working,” said Trujillo. “We’ve been playing well, but we’ve had a lack of concentration in the final minutes. We have to change that and we have to do it right away because we’re losing a lot of points.”