Dallas native Omar Gonzalez made his second start in a World Cup match Tuesday.
The star defender was born and raised in Oak Cliff and now plays for the USA Men’s Team.
His family was on edge as they gathered at the Oak Cliff Social Club in Bishop Arts to watch the game.
“Oh it’s so much bigger than Thursday, it’s exciting it’s nerve-wracking,” said Angelica Gonzalez, Omar’s sister-in-Law. “His brother just told me he wanted to throw up earlier.”
Omar’s brother, Adrian, told NBC 5 he texted with his brother Tuesday morning before the game, and he says Gonzalez was excited and ready to play.
“He’s focused, he’s determined, he’s always having fun, but at the same time extremely focused, dedicated, determined,” Angelica said. “And, just so proud, so proud of his nation, so proud of his team, so proud of everything.”
While Omar Gonzalez may be proud to represent the USA, his family and friends in Oak Cliff said he represents much more closer to home.
“Representing Dallas, the city of Dallas, the city that we grew up in, the city of Oak Cliff, which is our roots, our heart because our families came from Mexico to raise us here as Americans in Oak Cliff and him representing that is an honor,” said Jaime Hernandez, Omar Gonzalez’s second cousin.
“I can’t speak for him, but I know all of us are happy for him – and when he gets back and we'll see each other again, all of us together, we’ll congratulate him and we’ll be happy to hug him and shake his hand,” Hernandez said.
After Tuesday’s 2 to 1 loss to Belgium, the Gonzalez family simply wants Omar to know they’re proud.
They said he’ll be headed back to Los Angeles where he is currently the highest paid defender in Major League Soccer.