Monterrey’s Ayovi upbeat for new season

Monterrey's Walter Ayovi (pictured) met with the press on July 12, 2016. (Photo: Mexsport)

MONTERREY, Mexico – Monterrey kicks off its 2016 Liga MX Apertura campaign Saturday against visiting Puebla and left-sided standout Walter Ayovi is optimistic about what the next few months will bring. 

After finishing as runner-up to Pachuca in the 2016 Liga MX Clausura, the Rayados will be looking to claim their first domestic title since 2010 Apertura. The club will also return to the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League – a competition it won on three occasions -- for the first time since 2012/13, facing Group D rivals Don Bosco and Arabe Unido.

“You always think about winning in a club like this one, settling does not exist. We want to achieve more and be central figures, fighting like all the teams and hopefully it is a good season for us,” said Ayovi, a member of each of those SCCL-winning sides. “It is the same dream as always. The challenge is the same. The commitment from the first day is to reach the Liguilla and continue fighting like last season.”

For the 36-year-old Ecuador international, who competed in June’s Copa America Centenario, a victory to start the season would set a positive tone.

“We know that on Saturday the first matchday starts,” Ayovi commented. “We need to start off on the right foot and hopefully that’s how it goes.”

A quartet of new acquisitions -- goalkeeper Alexander Dominguez, midfielder Celso Ortiz, midfielder Yimmi Chara and winger Arturo Alfonso Gonzalez – also has Ayovi excited.

“Teammates have come in that are going to contribute to the team,” he finished. “They are here for the great things they have done and we hope to adapt to what the manager asks of us and to fight to maintain a high level.”