• Wednesday Feb 19, 2014

    Metapan’s Muñoz looks for more successes in 2014

    Nicolas Muñoz (pictured) has been a standout performer for El Salvador's Isidro Metapan both domestically and internationally. (Photo: Salvador Melendez)

    METAPAN, El Salvador -- At 32-years-old, Nicolas Muñoz is maintaining excellent form and he doesn’t plan on slowing down. 

    Currently, the Isidro Metapan striker shares the 2014 Salvadoran Clausura scoring lead with Dragon’s Williams Reyes and Jesus Toscanini of Juventude Independiente on four goals each.  And, he is already thinking about a Jaguares repeat as league champion.

    The veteran expressed his desire to lift the trophy once again in an interview with CONCACAF.com.

    “We are working very hard to be champions this season and also working for the next season because we have the opportunity to play again in the CONCACAF Champions League (CCL),” said Muñoz, referring to the fact that Metapan will play in the 2014-15 version of the CONCACAF club championship.

    It can be stated that the CONCACAF Champions League (CCL) is “his” tournament.  During the 2012-13 edition, Muñoz was co-winner of the Golden Boot with Carlos Darwin Quintero of Santos as the tournament’s leading scorer with six goals.

    Overall, the Panamanian has struck for 11 of Metapan’s last 13 CCL tallies, including all four in a 4-0 win over the LA Galaxy on October 24, 2013.  That performance equaled him with Jose Maria Cardenas and Javier Orozco for the most goals in a single CCL match. 

    His total of 11 career CCL goals ties him for seventh on the all-time list. 

    Without a doubt, the CCL motivates Muñoz.

    “We know that the Champions League is like our World Cup and thank God personally I have been good in it,” explained Muñoz.  “In the last tournament I was able to score goals and I am happy that we have the passage to the next Champions League that starts next semester.”

    In the current domestic campaign, Isidro Metapan is second with 10 points after five matches – three points behind FAS -- and the team has already scored ten goals.  Muñoz says that the reason for the team’s a successful attack can be attributed to stability.

    “The continuity has helped a lot,” he Muñoz.  “We practically have the same players and the young players have more experience.  We have an offensive team that likes to take on opponents.”

    Metapan captured the 2013 Apertura title following a memorable post-season run.  First, the team defeated Alianza 1-0 in an elimination match to determine the playoff’s fourth team.  Then, it narrowly got past Atletico Marte in the semifinals, 3-2 on aggregate, before defeating FAS in the single-game final, 1-0. 

    Muñoz points out that the team never doubted its championship credentials.

    “There is a lot of fight and devotion in this team,” concluded Muñoz.  “It was complicated, but we never lost faith in ourselves and we had the unity that carries us to win the title.” 

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