Mexico's Giovani dos Santos: I am not a controversial player
LA Galaxy forward Giovani dos Santos blasted the media for portraying him as problematic following the news that he had rejected a call-up to the Mexico team for this summer's Copa America Centenario.
Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio on Tuesday confirmed that Dos Santos had declined the invitation to play in the special event, which will be held from June 3-26 across the United States.
"I am not a controversial player," Dos Santos told La Pasion de Televisa. "I have worked very hard to get where I am today. You [the media] are never going to be happy. When I say something you are always going to see the negative side. You will never be happy with anything, but that is part of football."
During his news conference in Mexico City to reveal the 23-man squad for the tournament, Osorio refused to elaborate on the reasons for Dos Santos' absence, saying only: "To be ethical, what was spoken about will stay between the two of us."
Dos Santos, 27, has not played for Mexico since the CONCACAF Gold Cup last summer. He has scored five goals in seven games for the Galaxy this season.
Asked by reporters to reveal his motives for rejecting the call-up, Dos Santos bristled at the reporter's use of the word "rejected."
"I am not going to give details. I am going to leave this where it stayed. People can have all the opinions they want. If I am not among the 23, I am not on the team. It is tough to answer these kind of questions, especially now because this news is so recent."
Dos Santos sent out three separate messages via Twitter on Tuesday, with the final message saying he wished Osorio and the entire squad the best of luck at Copa America.
Agradezco profundamente a la FMF considerarme. No puedo participar en esta ocasión, pero mi corazón estará con ustedes siempre.- Giovani Dos Santos (@OficialGio) May 18, 2016
Espero pronto pueda regresar con gran entusiasmo de llevar la camiseta de mi tan amado país.- Giovani Dos Santos (@OficialGio) May 18, 2016
A Juan Carlos Osorio y a mis hermanos de la Selección Mexicana, les deseo un excelente torneo, mucho ánimo y éxito en esta Copa ¡Con todo! ��- Giovani Dos Santos (@OficialGio) May 18, 2016
"I am very grateful to the FMF [Mexico federation] for taking me into consideration. I cannot participate at this time, but my heart will always be with you," read the message. "To Juan Carlos Osorio and my brothers of the Mexico national team, I hope you have a great tournament with much success at this Copa. Give it your all!
"I hope to return soon with great enthusiasm and wear the jersey of the country I love so much."
El Tri is in Group C of the Copa America Centenario, alongside Jamaica, Uruguay and Venezuela. The squad opens its campaign against Uruguay on June 5 in Phoenix before traveling to Pasadena to face Jamaica on June 9 and to Houston to close the group stage against Venezuela on June 13.
Mexico warms up for the competition with friendlies against Paraguay (Atlanta on May 28) and Chile (San Diego on June 1) and goes into this summer's competition off the back of a 12-match undefeated streak.