AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin FC will get their first taste of international competition on Tuesday when they host Tigres UANL in a friendly match at Q2 Stadium.
Tigres, a professional club based in Monterrey, Mexico, competes in the Liga MX league, and they have won seven championships in league history.
In 2020, they defeated Austin FC’s most recent opponent, LA FC to win the CONCACAF Champions League title.
The match was announced on June 30, and Austin FC Sporting Director Claudio Reyna views it as an opportunity to increase Austin FC’s profile.
“We are proud to offer Austin FC’s fans this marquee event as our first international friendly,” said Reyna in a press release announcing the match. “Tigres is a successful Liga MX Club that will bring a notable roster for their preseason in the U.S. It will be a great experience for fans and for our players. We look forward to hosting Tigres at Q2 Stadium.”
As is usually the case with sports teams, Tigres’ rich history and multiple championships are the primary reasons for their popularity even in many parts of the United States.
The official Club Tigres Twitter account has 1.8 million followers, which is a larger following than the previous two Super Bowl championship team accounts (Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers).
The match on Tuesday will also give Central Texas soccer fans a chance to see Tigres begin a new era; the club hired a new coach, Miguel Herrera.
Herrera has won two championships in his career, in addition to being the Mexican national team manager for nearly two years. Herrera replaced longtime coach Ricardo Ferretti, who was the head man of Tigres for 11 years.
Tigres has several standout players and ironically, two of those players are not even from Mexico. 2018 World Cup winner Florian Thuavin signed a deal in May to join Tigres on a five-year contract. Fellow countryman Andre-Pierre Gignac is arguably their biggest star, scoring 19 goals combined in 26 starts during Apertura and Clausura play in 2020.
There are also two members of the Mexican national team on the Tigres roster, right back Luis Alfonso Rodriguez and center back Carlos Salcedo.
Tigres played in Austin before, back in 2018, when they faced Pachuca at Dell Diamond.
Tigres will face Club América at San Antonio’s Alamodome on July 10 before the game against Austin FC.
How to watch
Austin FC vs. Tigres UANL
When: Tuesday, July 13
Where: Q2 Stadium (Austin, Texas)