U.S. youth Jonathan Gonzalez thrilled to win Copa MX with Monterrey
United States youth international midfielder Jonathan Gonzalez helped Monterrey to win the Copa MX on Thursday, with Rayados defeating Pachuca 1-0 in Estadio BBVA Bancomer.
The victory capped a fine season for 18-year-old Gonzalez, who is on the radar of both the U.S. and Mexico national teams.
"Honestly, I never imagined that I'd be where I am, but things can change in an instant and you have to take advantage," Gonzalez said after the game in quotes reported by Medio Tiempo.
Monterrey's winner came through Aviles Hurtado in the 57th minute and the Copa MX victory followed just 11 days on from Rayados losing the Liga MX final in the same stadium to arch-rival Tigres.
"As well as the positives, I also went through a very difficult time after losing that final, but we are deserved winners [of the cup]," Gonzalez, who went the full 90 minutes on Thursday, said.
The Californian midfielder was named in the Liga MX's official Best XI for the 2017 Apertura and has enjoyed a breakout season, featuring 22 times in the league and in five cup games, despite having only made his first-team debut on July 22.
Gonzalez has been a regular for the U.S. youth teams, but Mexico is also pushing for the dual national.
One report from Goal suggested Gonzalez was unhappy at not being called into the November squad for the U.S. game against Portugal, which could open the door for Mexico. The U.S. team is currently in flux after missing out on World Cup qualification, while it does not have a permanent manager and U.S. Soccer is in the midst of a presidential election.
Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio has talked about Gonzalez and indicated he is on El Tri's radar, although the Colombian was adamant that the midfielder would have to battle it out for a spot in the squad like any other player.
Gonzalez and Monterrey's next official game will be on Jan. 6 in Rayados' 2018 Clausura opener against Morelia.
Tom Marshall covers Liga MX and the Mexican national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @MexicoWorldCup.