Adolfo Machado (pictured) has played in seven games during Panama's qualifying campaign for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. (Photo: Luis Licona/Straffon Images)
HOUSTON – After three years of great success at Saprissa, Panama international Adolfo Machado is hoping to do the same with his new club, the Houston Dynamo.
The 31-year-old defender played in 130 matches with the Monstruo Morado after joining from Panamanian side San Francisco in 2013, helping the Costa Rican power win four titles and clinch berths in three editions of the Scotiabank CONCACAF Champions League (2014/15, 2015/16, 2016/17).
While acknowledging his decision in December to leave Saprissa was difficult, Machado is optimistic he can replicate similar outcomes in Major League Soccer.
“It was not easy leaving Saprissa,” Machado told CONCACAF.com. “I spoke with my wife and we said that it was a good opportunity for us. In the end, it was able to happen and now we are here. We know that we leave a great institution like Saprissa, a club where many titles were earned. We had success there and now it’s time to do the same here in Houston.”
In addition to helping improve the Dynamo, 2017 will also be a critical year for Machado at the international level. With 67 caps under his belt, Machado is currently involved in his third World Cup qualifying cycle with the Panama, which has four points through the two matches in the final round of CONCACAF qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The Panamanians are striving for their first-ever World Cup berth and Machado is keenly aware that history is at stake. He is desperate to deliver for his country.
“Thank God we’ve had a good start in the Hexagonal,” finished Machado. “Panama is a team that is hungry to get the ticket to the World Cup. We are not settling. Each time that we represent our country, we want more. We give everything in each training session to bring that joy to the Panamanian people.”