Cristian and Alex Roldán
The Roldán brothers swapping jerseys at the end of their WCQ match in 2021 Seattle Sounders FC communications

SEATTLE - As part of National Siblings Day, The Latin Times sat down with Cristian and Alex Roldán, who have spent most of their lives playing next to each other. In 2018, the Sounders FC stars became the 15th different pair of siblings in MLS history to play in the same team.

Here's what they had to say about each other.

What's your earliest memory of playing soccer and your earliest playing together?

Cristian: My earliest memory of us playing soccer was while our older brother was at practice. Whether it was just playing or competing against each other, we always wanted to win so it would end with one of us getting frustrated and wanting to quit but I think that's what made us stronger.

Alex: We used to go to this park down the street from our house, we were so competitive and loved the sport. Like he said, when one person lost or the other one won we would get so frustrated. I think eventually that made us the people we are today. It was honestly the most beneficial thing for us.

Tell me about the decision to represent different national teams.

Alex: I was just trying to separate. We always played for the same team even at the professional level, but it was my own way of creating my own path or legacy in a sense. It was more of a personal thing to see what I can do by myself.

Can you tell me how you felt back in 2021 when you faced each other at Estadio Cuscatlán?

Cristian: It was especially emotional for me because I didn't think we would ever be in a World Cup Qualifier. Our parents were there, front row, watching us compete and watching El Salvador embrace me as one of them at the end of the was such a surreal moment for our family to be the first brothers to play against each other in a World Cup Qualifier. It's something that will always be there in the history books. For us, it took us back to playing together in the backyard, battling it out and competing against each other and I think Alex got the best of me that day.

Are you the typical competitive siblings? Who's the most competitive out of the two?

Alex: I think different things motivate us. For me, one of those was I hated losing to my older brother. Seeing all the things he's done has always motivated me to try to be better and I think he would say the same thing goes for him, no one wants to get beaten by their younger brother!

Cristian: I always felt like Alex was the most talented. I was always motivated to work hard and get better whereas Alex everything came to him a little more naturally.

Alex: one of the stories we can share from back in the day was when we were at the basketball court. He had a cast on his right arm, which was his shooting arm, but somehow he was still beating me with his left hand!

Was that the day you decided to quit basketball?

Alex: That was the day I had a real self reflection that I needed to get better (laughs). He's always been a mentor for me. He's paved the way for me to become a professional athlete and I think he deserves all the credit for that.

Q: Alex I know you are the youngest of the family so I am going to have to ask Cristian this one...Who is the "consentido de mamá?"

Cristian: Me, no question about it.

Alex: It's so obvious, she's always loved him I mean, Cristian is such a likeable person. In our family he's always the one that my mom turns to. We know she loves us equally but it's a running joke around our family that Cristian is the "consentido."

How "Latino" are you guys? What's one of the most "Latino" things you do?

Alex: We put pans in our oven, it's basically storage. It's funny because we just moved to a new house recently and I helped move things in and I put pans in there. My wife turned the oven on not knowing that they were in there and I made a joke to her saying "What do you mean you didn't know they were there, we are Latinos!"

What was the most "Latino" thing your parents used to do/say when growing up?

Cristian: The first one that comes to mind is they didn't let us out of the house with wet hair because they think we get sick and, to this day, Alex still believes that.

Alex: For me it would be coming back home after a soccer game they would criticize everything we did on the field. I think that's the most Latino thing ever.

Q: What's your brother's go-to type of food when eating out?

Alex: He's a pizza guy. Everyone knows he loves pizza.

Cristian: I would say we both are huge food junkies. A nice pizza after the game with a soda is usually my go-to.

Who would you say has the best music taste?

Alex: We have a very similar taste in music. Cristian has some R&B taste that maybe I don't. We went to a concert once and heard him singing so it made me think that he liked R&B.

Cristian: I remember telling Alex that the Bad Bunny album was bad after listening to it maybe one time and he started laughing at me saying to go back and listen to it again.

Growing up, what are some of the shows you used to watch?

Cristian: We watched shows all the time. I remember Alex watching the telenovela "Rubí" all the time.

Alex: That was the only telenovela I have ever watched in my life!

Out of the two, who would you say is faster?

Alex: Cristian for sure.

Who's got a better touch?

Cristian: Alex, I think he has a better touch than me. He's more composed.

Alex: Really? That one could go either way honestly.

More skilled?

Alex: Cristian.

Cristian: Alex.

And finally, who's hit the other one the hardest?

Cristian: I hit him the hardest (laughs).

Alex: For sure. There was one time in high school where he hit me pretty hard. It was clean though, I just didn't see it coming because it was my brother so I wasn't ready.

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