SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador – Platense’s objective in the second leg of its 2017 Scotiabank CONCACAF League Round of 16 series against host Alianza on Tuesday night is a simple one: win.
Well, maybe it’s not that simple.
The Honduran side fell 2-1 in last week’s opener, meaning that a 1-0 win will not be enough to progress. A 2-1 victory will see matters settled from the penalty spot, while any triumph by two goals or more will guarantee advancement
“We know how to overcome the result we had in Puerto Cortes,” team captain and winger Edgar Alvarez said. “We know that it will not be easy because Alianza is a team that plays football well, that has very dynamic players. But we have worked in knowing to capitalize on the qualities that we have and put them in practice on Tuesday night."
Platense was one of two sides to lose at home in the eight first-leg games, so a good start -- at what could be a rainy Estadio Cuscatlan -- will be necessary.
"(We are) hoping that the rain is not so strong and does not prevent the ball from rolling well,” commented Alvarez. “If these conditions we are given -- that the ball does not roll well -- it would be much more difficult for us because we could not play a flat football and will make for an aerial game. We are accustomed to having the ball on the grass. But equally, we would have to adapt independently as this the climate we have to think about winning because we are the most urgent.”
Regardless of the conditions and sense of urgency, Alvarez is preaching patience, especially since falling behind to Alianza will be detrimental to the comeback cause.
"We have to be well balanced in these games because there -- with the eagerness to want to score quickly -- we can have a type of frenzy and leave certain areas where they can hurt us,” he finished. “It will be a very stressful game. We work in the short time that we have left in which way to be able to reverse this result and advancing is the key. That is the most important.”