Sounders Insider

Mexico-Ecuador friendly 1 p.m. Saturday at Qwest

An international soccer friendly between Mexico and Ecuador will kick off at 1 p.m. Saturday at Qwest Field.

Ticket sales already have topped 40,000.

In 2008, Mexico defeated China 1-0 at Qwest Field before a crowd of 56,416.

“Mexico, as far as the national level, has really grown,” former Mexican national team goalkeeper Jorge Campos said during a recent visit to Seattle. “Before, there wasn’t as much television exposure and there wasn’t as much marketing. Never before in history would there ever have been two games by the national team in Seattle. But that’s beginning to change a little bit.”

Campos will be among a handful of former Mexican stars appearing at Futbol Fiesta, a free fan event at the stadium starting at 9 a.m. Others include Luis Roberto Alves Zague, German Villa, Beto Garcia Aspe and Felix Fernandez.

Top names on the current Mexican team include midfielder Andres Guardado, forward Giovani dos Santos and forward Pablo Barrera. New York Red Bulls defender Rafael Marquez is the only MLS player with El Tri. Midfielder Luis Perez of Monterrey scored a penalty kick against Sounders FC in the 2010-11 CONCACAF Champions Cup.

Mexico is using this match as preparation for CONCACAF Gold Cup, and Ecuador for Coppa America.

The game will be shown on Univision. I'm also attending and will have updates here and on Twitter @donruiztnt.

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