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“The result was unjust,” Hugo Sanchez said. “This is a unique game in that you can deserve to win and still lose.We deserved to win and they did not.”

Hugo Sanchez is a living contradiction. In same time he aspired to be a great tactical manager he constantly criticized every recent Mexico manager until he landed himself the job. On one hand he marvels at the play of the United States and on the other he claims they are inferior to Mexico. On one hand he claims the Mexican League where he managed and MLS where he played are excellent leagues then on the other he wants his players moving to Europe. Sanchez on one hand said he would choose an all Mexican league squad for the early year friendlies and then relented by calling every single Mexican national pool member who plays in Europe over for a midweek friendly. Now he claims the result of last week’s 2-0 loss to the US was “unjust.”

Hugo Sanchez may want a few friendly reminders. In the 1998 World Cup Qualifier held in Foxborough the US pretty much took the game to Mexico but ended up in a draw thanks to a freak turnover by Kasey Keller than ended up as an easy goal for Carlos Hermisillo. How about the 1998 CONCACAF Gold Cup final where a Luis Hernandez counterattack breakaway allowed the Mexicans to life the trophy even though the Americans dominated possession and outshot Mexico 8 to 3. You see Soccer isn’t about “style points.” Controlling possession for much of a match to only breakdown in the final third does not mean you deserve a victory. As has been the case for years Mexico failed to do much off of set pieces and had suspect finishing. Despite numerous dangerous looking attacks, Mexico never really threatened to score a goal. I can recall only two or three really good shots on goal and they were all poorly struck while Tim Howard was in perfect position.

The Mexicans keep looking for excuses as to why they lose to the United States on such a consistent basis. It’s no wonder they call Landon Donovan the “Mexicutioner,” because in spite of his indifferent play of the last few years he seems to always get the best of his neighbor to the south. As a great Footballing nation, with a passion for the game unmatched in the CONCACAF region, Mexico and their greatest player ever need to use the US as a bar to strive for, rather than inventing new excuses after every loss. It can only help both national teams and the CONCACAF region on the world football stage.


About Kartik Krishnaiyer

A lifelong lover of soccer, the beautiful game, he served from January 2010 until May 2013 as the Director of Communications and Public Relations for the North American Soccer League (NASL). Raised on the Fort Lauderdale Strikers of the old NASL, Krishnaiyer previously hosted the American Soccer Show on the Champions Soccer Radio Network, the Major League Soccer Talk podcast and the EPL Talk Podcast. His soccer writing has been featured by several media outlets including The Guardian and The Telegraph. He is the author of the book Blue With Envy about Manchester City FC.
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