Copa Libertadores “Sights and Sounds”
Club Tijuana “Xolos” (MEX) vs Palmeiras (BRA)
Estadio Caliente, Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico
April 30, 2013
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1. Copa Libertadores is the club soccer championship of South America. It is operated by the South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL). Japanese tire manufacturer Bridgestone is the current title sponsor of Copa Libertadores. FOX Sports International is the primary pay television rights holder in the Americas.
2. Even though the Mexican Football Federation (FMF) is NOT a member of CONMEBOL, CONMEBOL invites 3 Mexican clubs to participate in Copa Libertadores as guests so that CONMEBOL can take advantage of the lucrative Mexican and U.S. Hispanic television markets in order to enhance the value of television rights and sponsorships. The 3 Mexican clubs are generally the top finishers of Torneo Apertura (Opening Tournament) of Liga MX (Mexican First Division). on the condition that the clubs are NOT participating in the current CONCACAF Champions League (the club soccer championship of the North America/Central America/Caribbean Football Confederation.)
3. As the champion of the 2012 Liga MX Torneo Apertura, Club Tijuana “Xolos” received a guest invitation to participate in the 2013 Copa Libertadores (as Club Tijuana did not participate in the 2012-2013 CONCACAF Champions League.) The Xolos advanced from the Group Stage of Copa Libertadores to the knockout stage, which starts with the Round of 16.
4. The Round of 16, 1st Leg match (Octavos de Final – Partido de Ida) on April 30 was a rare opportunity for U.S. residents to attend a Copa Libertadores knockout stage match without the need to use air transportation, as Estadio Caliente in Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico is located about 3 miles (5 km) from the U.S. border checkpoint at San Ysidro, California. Because Club Tijuana will participate in the 2013-2014 CONCACAF Champions League, the Xolos will probably NOT be eligible to participate in the 2014 Copa Libertadores.
5. Club Tijuana uses the slogan El Equipo Sin Fronteras (The Team Without Borders) and markets heavily in the San Diego area in both English and Spanish. The San Diego Union-Tribune newspaper assigns veteran sports reporter Mark Zeigler to cover the Xolos at Estadio Caliente if there were no conflicts with San Diego State University men’s and women’s basketball games. Sports radio host Darren Smith of “The Mighty 1090″ (XEPRS-AM) also travels to Estadio Caliente for selected Xolos matches. The Xolos employ English-language Communications Manager Ivan Orozco (email@example.com) to handle the needs of English-language media around the world.