Herculez Gomez grew up surrounded by the U.S.-Mexico soccer rivalry.
As a boy, he remembers getting up early on weekends to watch games from Mexico with his immigrant parents. Then when he got older, he would drive to the Rose Bowl to see the Galaxy play.
“I had two sets of heroes,” he said. “I idolized Cobi Jones, I idolized Cuauhtemoc Blanco.”
Gomez would go on to play with Jones and against Blanco, as well as for and against the U.S., spending much of his club career in the Mexican league while still a member of the American national team.
That left him with a two-sided perspective on the U.S.-Mexico rivalry, one of the most intense in international soccer....