Pachuca is popularly known by its people and the rest of the country as “La Bella Airosa” (The airy beauty) due to the splendour of its buildings and the 75-km/h winds that regularly buffet it between the months of June and October.

Situated 96km from Mexico City, it is the capital of the state of Hidalgo and has long been known as a mining city - its precious metals once attracting prospectors from all over the world. In the late 19th century a group of English miners even brought a ball with them, introducing the beautiful game to the country and giving the city its title as The Cradle of Mexican Football.

Criss-crossed by sloping streets and narrow alleyways lined with old miners’ houses, the city’s historical centre is home to some stunning examples of colonial art and architecture, among them El Reloj Monumental, El Edificio de las Cajas Reales and La Casa del Conde de Rule. Pachuca is also famed for its cuisine. Taking pride of place are its famous pastes, a Mexican variation on the Cornish pastie - a savoury pie from the south-west corner of England. Also worth a try are its barbecued specialities, escamoles (ants’ eggs) and chincuiles (maguey worms).

In short, Pachuca is a city with a long history behind it but which has also learned to adapt to the times and is constantly developing and renewing itself.

Although the birthplace of the Mexican game, Pachuca is very much a force on the modern domestic scene. After several seasons languishing in the second division Los Tuzos have become one of the region’s powerhouses, winning the Mexican title five times in the last 11 years, becoming CONCACAF champions on four occasions and adding the 2006 Copa Sudamericana for good measure. Pachuca have also qualified for the FIFA Club World Cup UAE 2010, their third appearance in the competition.

Los Tuzos play at the Estadio Hidalgo, one of the finest stadiums in the country and located at the Universidad del Futbol, a sports education complex that is the only one of its kind in the world and a source of pride for the city’s inhabitants.