In our Mexico preview for this summer’s Copa America Centenario, we predict how far the team will advance in the tournament, as well as reviewing their squad roster, the schedule of upcoming games and who their star player is.
Manager: Juan Carlos Osorio
Captain: Rafael Marquez
Mexico preview: Squad:
GOALKEEPERS (3): Jesús Corona (Cruz Azul, MEX), Guillermo Ochoa (Málaga, ESP), Alfredo Talavera (Toluca, MEX)
DEFENDERS (9): Paúl Aguilar (Club América, MEX), Néstor Araujo (Santos Laguna, MEX), Yasser Corona (Querétaro, MEX), Héctor Moreno (PSV, NED), Miguel Layún (Porto, POR), Rafael Márquez (Atlas, MEX), Jesús Molina (Santos Laguna, MEX), Diego Reyes (Real Sociedad, ESP), Jorge Torres Nilo (Tigres UANL, MEX)
MIDFIELDERS (4): Jesús Dueñas (Tigres UANL, MEX), Andrés Guardado (PSV, NED), Héctor Herrera (Porto, POR), Carlos Peña (Guadalajara, MEX)
FORWARDS (7): Javier Aquino (Tigres UANL, MEX), Jesús Corona (Porto, POR), Cándido Ramírez (Monterrey, MEX), Javier Hernández (Bayer Leverkusen, GER), Raúl Jiménez (Benfica, POR), Hirving Lozano (Pachuca, MEX), Oribe Peralta (Club América, MEX)
Mexico preview: Overview:
Mexico sent a shadow squad to the 2015 Copa America, with their priority clearly being a successful Gold Cup campaign later in the summer. After grasping glory in the latter, the decision was vindicated, especially as these players now have a chance to go full tilt at the Centenario.
El Tri deserve to be considered as genuine contenders for the title too. While they will be without the effervescent Miguel Herrera on the sidelines in a major tournament for the first time in a while, new boss Osorio is a steady hand who has plenty of experience. He’s brought an assuredness to this squad, reflective in recent results.
Indeed, a 2-2 draw in a friendly last September against Argentina showed Mexico’s ability to mix it with the elite nations. Since then they’ve won seven games in a row, with no goals conceded in their last six. And while showing sharp defensive play, it’s in attacking areas where the strength of this team truly lies.
Osorio has a lot of forwards at his disposal who have chased redemption this term, including Javier Hernandez at Bayer Leverkusen, Raul Jimenez with Benfica and LA Galaxy’s Giovani dos Santos. That men such as Carlos Vela, Jesus Corona and Oribe Peralta will struggle to make the starting XI is testament to the firepower Mexico possess.
Still, this isn’t a team who will be lured into chaotic shootouts with other sides. Mexico have shown they can operate with diversity, with a midfield trio of Andres Guardado, Hector Herrera and Jonathan dos Santos all extremely versatile players. At the back, Diego Reyes looks set to shine having thrived with Real Sociedad this term, while young Hirving Lozano could be a wildcard on the wing.