Soccer plays a big part in my life and is one of the most essential things that makes me who I am.

My dad has always taught my sister and me at a young age what it's like to love the game of soccer and how to love a hometown team.

My first experience with sports, in general, would probably have to do with soccer. I'm almost positive the first jersey I ever owned was a soccer jersey from my dad's hometown team in Mexico.

Being a Mexican-American has definitely allowed me to learn a lot about both of the cultures I'm a part of, especially when it comes to soccer.

It's no surprise to anyone that soccer in the U.S. is certainly behind compared to soccer in many other countries and leagues. I guess that's why I always decided to stick to Mexican soccer, where the culture between the fans was more fascinating.

The summer before college I had the opportunity to take a trip to my dad's hometown for a week and was able to see a game at the stadium I grew up going to.

The feeling that overcame me when I was walking towards the stadium is one that I can't explain. It was happiness I hadn't felt in a long time because it had been years since I had gone to a professional soccer game.

I felt content with the environment and the atmosphere around me.

With having a paint tattoo on my cheek of the home team's logo, like I was five years old again.

With singing the cheers and chants from the top of my lungs.

With having beer thrown on me and everyone around me as we were cheering from our team winning a goal.

That's what the Mexican soccer culture is. And that's what matters.