Big questions before Mexico’s pre-World Cup friendlies

Only two months separate the Mexico males’s nationwide group from their World Cup group-stage opener towards Poland on Nov. 22. Before the go back and forth to Qatar, El Tri have two upcoming friendlies in California, towards Peru (Sept. 24) on the Rose Bowl in Pasadena and towards Colombia (Sept. 27) at Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara.

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Leading into the video games, there were few indicators of Mexico shaking off the rust that made World Cup qualifying and former friendlies a strenuous ordeal for supervisor Gerardo “Tata” Martino and his roster. During a information convention on Tuesday, topics of damage worries, fan discontent and management problems surrounded the group that experience only one win of their final 5.

Mexico had been some distance from their absolute best, and with the hopes of them gaining some much-needed self assurance this month, listed here are a couple of questions that proceed to linger above them before the World Cup.

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Will ill-timed accidents hang-out Mexico?

Ideally, Martino would have his best gamers to be had for upcoming friendlies as they get ready for the World Cup. Instead, he’s going to now need to proceed his groundwork with out a few of his high-profile names.

Martino stated big name striker Raul Jimenez has “no chance” of enjoying this week on account of harm. Martino made no promises that the Wolverhampton Wanderers frontman might be on the World Cup both, pointing out that “I never thought we would be in this situation. … I do have to give it a lot of thought.”

While with the squad, Jimenez is doing restoration coaching alongside Ajax Amsterdam’s Jorge Sanchez and Monterrey duo Rogelio Funes Mori and Luis Romo, who’re all set to go away camp before the sport towards Colombia. Houston Dynamo FC midfielder Hector Herrera may be a doubt and is these days being evaluated by way of the clinical group.

Along with the intense leg harm for Sevilla’s Jesus “Tecatito” Corona in August that may most likely stay him out of the World Cup — despite the fact that Martino did notice that they will reassess him in early October — Mexico now all at once have somewhat over a 3rd in their absolute best XI no longer totally wholesome.

That now signifies that the following two video games might be key find those that can step up as imaginable replacements. Backups like Henry Martin, Santiago Gimenez, Diego Lainez, Orbelin Pineda, Erick Gutierrez, Luis Chavez, Kevin Alvarez and others must all get alternatives to assert mins and push away any worries referring to accidents. That stated, if answers do not rise up, the skepticism round El Tri will best develop more potent before the World Cup.

Is there an El Tri management void?

When issues have got difficult for Mexico, which has necessarily been the final yr or so, many fanatics and media have yearned for oldschool leaders just like the eccentrically brash Cuauhtemoc Blanco or the extra stoic and resolute Rafael Marquez.

A perceived loss of strong-willed steering has develop into a speaking level, however is that essentially legitimate?

“They say there are no leaders in the national team, that’s not true. They say it because they are looking for the leader from the past: the grouch, a scolder, the one who demonstrates, and that has changed,” stated captain Andres Guardado on Tuesday a few meant loss of commanding names.

Guardado later made a just right level by way of spotting that he prefers to be a extra open and approachable roughly captain. Instead of shelling out the “rigid and cold” conversations he handled as a more youthful participant, he loves to be light-hearted and has been extra concerned within the transition of latest gamers into the squad.

That stated, there must most likely even be a transition into other leaders for Mexico as smartly. As necessary as Guardado is within the locker room, the similar cannot be stated at the pitch the place he’s now not a assured member of the beginning XI. Other veterans reminiscent of Herrera and Hector Moreno also are at the cusp of being changed, if no longer already, of their beginning positions.

Guillermo Ochoa is an unquestionable member of the XI, and nearly gave the impression of a political candidate on Tuesday as he proclaimed that “in the hour that a Mexican has to close ranks, we all close ranks,” however his affect as a pacesetter stays held to the online and no longer as a box participant.

It’s not likely that we will all at once see the captain’s armband passed to a more youthful title over the following couple of friendlies, however there must be an ambition for level-headed or hard-working gamers like Edson Alvarez, Cesar Montes or Gutierrez to step up and probably be new guiding forces into the World Cup.

And what about that quinto partido?

It’s a countrywide obsession this is synonymous with the nationwide group: the quinto partido.

Translated to “the fifth game,” the pronouncing marks a determined want for Mexico to qualify for the quarterfinals of the World Cup — and thereby enjoying a 5th sport — after in the past exiting within the spherical of 16 for seven consecutive tournaments.

As spectacular as it’s that Mexico has at all times long gone previous the crowd level for the reason that 1994 World Cup, the truth that the group has long gone thru a equivalent destiny in seven tournaments turns out to signify a stagnation, and no longer expansion, for the nationwide group construction.

At the instant, stagnation resulting in regression appears to be extra related for El Tri. Martino himself admitted that he believes his squad had been enjoying at their absolute best thru 2019-20 and no longer within the final yr or so — during which they have got did not win the CONCACAF Nations League and Gold Cup, whilst additionally going 4 consecutive video games with no victory towards their U.S. competitors.

Time is operating out for him to influence Mexico again not off course and in all probability succeed in that 5th sport, but when there may be any glimmer of a possibility that it will occur, convincing effects towards Peru and Colombia could be massive steps in the appropriate route.



Herc Gomez can not conceal his love for the brand new Mexico away equipment and coaching jacket.

On the trail against doing so, Alvarez spread out on Tuesday about Mexico’s squad visualizing that quinto partido.

“We always think about it, but it’s something that we need to keep calm in our heads, because if we go there [to Qatar] with this in our minds, it’s not good for us,” stated the midfielder.

It’s going to be a tremendous stability between having an goal however no longer overthinking the purpose, and within the technique of preventing for the accomplishment, two wins would paintings wonders in construction self assurance before the World Cup.

Jimenez spoke in regards to the quinto partido as smartly. He in all probability had the funniest reaction, and even perhaps the easiest mindset, when requested what crucial issue to creating it to the 5th sport was once: “Winning the fourth one.”

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