Sounders FC midfielder Gonzalo Pineda will be part of the Fox Sports 1 broadcast team Wednesday when Seattle teammate Brad Evans and the United States men’s national team takes on Mexico in San Antonio, Texas.
Pineda will provide analysis during the pregame show, along with Eric Wynalda, Stuart Holden and host Rob Stone.
“They contacted the Sounders, the Sounders told me about the idea, and I said ‘yes,’ ” Pineda said Tuesday after training at Starfire Sports. “It’s great; it’s a great opportunity.”
Pineda has worked in a broadcast booth once before, helping with coverage of the MLS All-Stars against Bayern Munich last season in Portland, but he handled those duties in Spanish. The USA-Mexico friendly will be his first English-language assignment.
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“I’m nervous,” he admitted.
Pineda, 32, quickly became a favorite with local media because of how he expresses his soccer knowledge in either language. Now in his second season as a Sounder, he also has 32 appearances with the Mexico national team and spent a decade playing professionally in Mexico.
Still, he doesn’t see broadcasting as an inevitable second career once his playing days end.
“Probably, my first thought is to become a coach,” he said, “but I don’t know.”
Pineda shared this advance analysis of Mexico that will meet the U.S. at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Alamodome: “I think it’s a young team, a new team,” he said. “It’s the last chance that (coach) Miguel Herrera has to see which players can be in Copa America. Of course he knows which players can be in Gold Cup — the first team will be there. But the second team is the one that is kind of at risk for him, so he wants to see (them) in a dangerous spot in a big game against the U.S. in a difficult situation with a lot of pressure. It’s going to be good.”
The United States roster also mixes established and emerging players.
Seattle is represented with Evans; Federal Way native and former Sounder DeAndre Yedlin, now of Tottenham Hotspur; and Seattle native and former Sounders FC academy forward Jordan Morris, now of Stanford.
Seattle forward Clint Dempsey wasn’t called for the friendly, at least in part because of a hamstring injury that kept him out of the Sounders’ 1-0 loss Sunday at Los Angeles.
Schmid said the club is “pretty confident” Dempsey will be available when the Sounders return to league play Saturday at Colorado.
Evans’ availability for that game could depend on how national team coach Jurgen Klinsmann uses him Wednesday.
“Is he in the starting lineup? Is he going to play center back? Is he playing outside back or whatever? That’s up for Jurgen to decide,” Sounders coach Sigi Schmid said. “We’ll play it by ear. … It’s an opportunity, and it’s good that Jurgen has confidence in him.”