In our Mexico Preview: World Cup 2018, we share our analysis about this Mexico team. Going into the tournament, there’s a lot of pressure on Juan Carlos Osorio and the players. Will they succumb to the pressure or find a way to win?
Mexico Preview: World Cup 2018
Goalkeepers: Jesus Corona, Guillermo Ochoa, Alfredo Talavera
Defenders: Edson Alvarez, Hugo Ayala, Jesus Gallardo, Miguel Layun, Hector Moreno, Diego Reyes, Carlos Salcedo
Midfielders: Giovani Dos Santos, Jonathan Dos Santos, Marco Fabian, Andres Guardado, Hector Herrera, Rafael Marquez
Forwards: Javier Aquino, Jesus Manuel Corona, Javier Hernandez, Raul Jimenez, Hirving Lozano, Oribe Peralta, Carlos Vela
- Manager: Juan Carlos Osorio
- Captain: Andres Guardado
- Best Finish: Quarter-Finals (1970, 1986)
Likely starting lineup
Mexico’s preparations for the 2018 World Cup certainly could’ve been smoother, as the team have been criticised after footage emerged of the players having a late-night party prior to travelling to Europe.
It’s been reported by the media in Mexico that escorts were present at the bash, although Javier Hernandez has denied that was the case and has insisted the party was for his birthday. A 2-0 loss in a friendly against Denmark did little to dispel fears that the players have been distracted ahead of the kickoff in Russia.
But you can always bank on El Tri to show something at the World Cup, as they’ve got out of the group stage in the last six editions of the tournament. Going further has been an issue, as they’ve been eliminated in the last 16 on all six occasions.
Osorio will have faith this side can go further. Topping the group will be difficult with Germany involved, but Mexico have more than enough to finish in second. They also have the individual talent and tactical flexibility to upset a big nation and potentially move into the quarter-finals of the competition too.
At times Osorio has used a three-man defense, although in the main Mexico line up in a 4-3-3 system. They also play an intense style of football, as they seek to press up the pitch, keep the ball in the final third and catch opponents in transition.
While they’ve called up 39-year-old Rafael Marquez once again—he’s on course to feature in a record-equalling fifth World Cup—Mexico are a side centered around energy and dynamism. If their minds are on the job at hand, they have the tools needed to be dark horses this summer.
Key Man – Hirving Lozano
Often another feature of a dark horse is a young player showing what he’s capable at the highest level for the first time. In Hirving Lozano, Mexico appear to have a tyro ready to do exactly that.
The forward heads to the World Cup after a stellar debut season with PSV Eindhoven, in which he netted 17 times and grabbed eight assists to help the team to the Eredivisie title. Lozano’s thrilling wing play on both flanks left defenders in serious trouble, as he’s so difficult to contain with his movement and flair.
While Lozano has yet to reach the same levels for his country, he’s the type of character who seems to be more inspired the bigger the game is. However, there have been times when his emotion has boiled over; he was sent off twice in the Dutch top flight last season.
Osorio will hope a number of experienced heads around Lozano will ensure his temperature stays in check at the tournament without wanting to dilute this firecracker of a footballer.
If Lozano can get it right alongside Hernandez and Carlos Vela up top, then Mexico have the potential to do some serious damage in the group stages.
Mexico’s Group Stage fixtures
Sunday, June 17
Saturday, June 23
Wednesday, June 27
Mexico’s path to the final
If Mexico wins Group F, their Round of 16 game will be against the country that finishes second from Group E which will either be Brazil, Costa Rica, Serbia or Switzerland. If Mexico wins that Round of 16 game, Mexico will enter the quarterfinal stage with a game against the team that is victorious between the winner of Group H (Poland, Senegal, Colombia or Japan) and the team that finishes second in Group G (either England, Belgium, Panama, Tunisia). If Mexico advances to the semi-final stage, it’ll play the winner of the quarterfinal that comes out of the B1 vs. A2 versus D1 vs. C2 series.
If Mexico finishes second in Group F, Mexico will play the team that finishes first in Group E (either Costa Rica, Brazil, Switzerland, Serbia). If Mexico wins that game, it would be in the quarterfinal against the team that is victorious between the winner of Group G (either England, Belgium, Panama or Tunisia) and the team that finishes second in Group H (either Poland, Senegal, Colombia or Japan). If Mexico advances to the semi-final stage, it’ll play the winner of the quarterfinal that comes out of the A1 vs. B2 versus C1 vs. D2 series.
Mexico World Cup shirt (home)
Mexico & adidas are putting a retro twist on their 2018 Home jersey for the World Cup by throwing it back their 1994 kit for inspiration. Here are a few things to keep in mind about this jersey: It features a green design on the front and sports the classic adidas stripes on the shoulders. Plus red, white, & green details from the Mexican flag inside the collar shouts national pride.
Mexico World Cup shirt (away)
When the Mexico national team enters Russia this summer, it will have the strength of a nation at its back. The same one the players wear for away games, this men’s soccer jersey incorporates all three colors of the national flag in shades that call back to the uniforms of the ’70s. It has a fitted fit and breathable, quick-drying fabric for the lightning pace of world-class soccer. The words “Soy México” are displayed below the back of its ribbed crewneck collar.
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