Chicharito, Marquez, Dos Santos highlight Mexico’s World Cup squad

RaulJimenezMexico2-Panama (Mexsport)

By DAN KARELL

After a difficult qualification process, Mexico are set to enter the 2014 World Cup with all of their high-profile stars.

At a press conference in Mexico City on Friday afternoon, Mexico National Team manager Miguel Herrera named his 23-man squad for Brazil, including European-based players such as Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, Giovani Dos Santos, and Guillermo Ochoa, as well as captain Rafa Marquez.

The squad is a talented mix of youth and veteran experience, with FC Porto’s Diego Reyes and Hector Herrera making the first of likely many World Cup squads, while Carlos Salcido, Francisco “Maza” Rodriguez, and even Oribe Peralta could be playing in their final World Cup.

Many members of the Mexican press had speculated that Miguel Herrera would pick one of Raul Jimenez or Alan Pulido, but the El Tri boss decided to take both. Instead, Herrera left off up-and-coming midfielder Javier Aquino, defender Juan Carlos “Topo” Valenzuela and midfielder Gerardo Torrado.

Speedy winger Pablo Barrera just returned to fitness from torn knee ligaments but did not have enough time to make the El Tri squad.

While Herrera did include many Europeans, he also called-up much of the core that helped Mexico qualify for the World Cup in the first place. Herrera will likely start Jose de Jesus Corona in goal, Marquez in defense, Luis Montes and Carlos Peña in midfield, and possibly Oribe Peralta up top in Herrera’s patented 5-3-2 formation.

An interesting note is that Andres Guardado is listed as a defender, likely playing as left wing-back for El Tri.

Prior to their World Cup opening match against Cameroon on June 13, Mexico will play four friendly matches across North America. El Tri first will host Israel at Estadio Azteca on May 28 and then face the first of three fellow World Cup participants in Ecuador on May 31 at AT&T Stadium outside of Dallas.

On June 3, El Tri will take on Bosnia and Herzegovina in Chicago before finishing their pre-World Cup tour on June 6 against Portugal at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass.

Here’s a closer look at Mexico’s World Cup roster:

GOALKEEPERS (3): Jesús Corona, Guillermo Ochoa, Alfredo Talavera

DEFENDERS (8): Andrés Guardado, Rafael Márquez, Héctor Moreno, Diego Reyes, Francisco “Maza” Rodríguez, Miguel Layún, Paul Aguilar, Carlos Salcido

MIDFIELDERS (7): Juan Carlos Medina, Marco Fabian, Héctor Herrera, Luis Montes, Juan José “Gallito” Vázquez, Carlos Alberto “Gullit” Peña, Isaac Brizuela

FORWARDS (5): Alan Pulido, Raúl Jiménez, Oribe Peralta, Giovani dos Santos, Javier “Chicharito” Hernández

——–

What do you think of this squad? Do you think they can gel together to get out of their group? Are you confident that Mexico can play better than they did in most of World Cup qualifying? Surprised with any of the selections?

Share your thoughts below.

This entry was posted in Featured, International Soccer, Mexican Soccer, World Cup 2014. Bookmark the permalink.

80 Responses to Chicharito, Marquez, Dos Santos highlight Mexico’s World Cup squad

  1. KingGoogleyEye says:

    Given their jerseys this year, I am really surprised not to see Tommy Oliver, Rocky DeSantos, or even Charlie Brown on the roster.

    • Mason says:

      El Tri’s shirts are still better than the firecracker shirts.

      • KingGoogleyEye says:

        That depends on whether you want to look like a fool or like a joke.

        Tipping in the US’s favor: the firecracker jersey looks okay if you’re colorblind.

      • JayAre says:

        never.

      • PSU says:

        The popsicle jerseys are bad, but they don’t look like a youth soccer jersey.

        • Mason says:

          Haven’t watched much youth soccer, have you?

          A travel team is exactly what the Popsicles-shirts look like.

          • PSU says:

            Not since I played youth soccer in the 90s. The choice jerseys at the time looked like Mexico’s. Maybe it’s a matter of they look like their from the early 90s and not being youth jerseys.

        • KingGoogleyEye says:

          Important distinction:

          Mexico’s Power Rangers jerseys will look good on children under age 10 years.

          USA’s bomb pop jerseys will look good on…Sydney Leroux.

    • Maykol says:

      I like their power ranger jerseys better than both of ours

      • KingGoogleyEye says:

        When they come together as Megazord, yes, but otherwise both nations’ jerseys are studies in failure.

    • Koman Coulibaly says:

      For me, these Mexico shirts feel like an “homage” to the 2010 Slovenia shirts, which I must confess I was quite partial to… not that anybody noticed.

  2. Carlos says:

    Are you for real Salcido sux!!!!!

  3. Dimidri says:

    Anybody who is happy El Tri is going to the World Cup is still wrong.

    Just remember, all you “CONCACAF needs this” people, the US and Mexico could play each other in the WC Final and CONCACAF maybe would get an additional half slot up from 3.5 to 4. World Cup slots are given based on how many WC-caliber teams you have in your confederation, not how good they are above that minimum threshold. Think about it, even taking into account affirmative action-esque policies and the fact they have way more countries, Asia has as many slots as South America. Africa has more. There’s a reason for that.

    The only way CONCACAF will ever get more slots is if teams outside the US-Mexico prove their value at World Cups. Panama going instead of Mexico would increase the odds of that happening.

    Beyond that, if Mexico didn’t go to this World Cup the US could have capitalized on young Mexican-Americans who don’t already have zero-sum allegiances to either side. That translates to youth players, fan support, revenue, etc.

    Above all that, ITS MEXICO.

    • Jesse says:

      As our hated rival I absolutely wanted Mexicans to stay at home for the World Cup. That said, I think you are missing something. It isn’t about gaining a slot, it could also be about losing a slot. What if Panama, Honduras and Costa Rica all come and get 0 points. Not out of the question. Even the US will have a hard time getting points in their group. If all the teams from Concacaf underperform, you can bet other confederations will be making an argument that Conocacaf should lose spots to them. Mexico does have a roster with the talent to compete in their group. Not embarrassing the confederation is a positive.

      • Maykol says:

        Yep. It looks like Mexico is the most realistic to get out of their group

        • FSegaud says:

          …then get stopped in their tracks again in the Round of 16 facing Spain/Netherlands/Chile. Choose your poison.

          • John says:

            Not just one of them, but who ever is the best after 3 matches between those.

          • Maykol says:

            And if US gets out of their group they would face Belgium, we would probably finish there too, if we even get that high

      • AMPhibian says:

        excellent counterpoint.

        • Ali Dia says:

          Exactly, Dimidri might be correct in saying this is how it “should be” logically, but it’s quite simply incorrect. It’s not how it is. Asia has been able to pimp the dominant “strongest teams matter most” argument successfully (and ridiculously considering how it actually happened) based on the performance of SK and Japan in 2002. In practice, it’s common knowledge that the weakest team in the tournament almost always comes from Asia. Nobody else sends a team that loses 8-0 in the modern era.

          By contrast, CONCACAF teams NEVER get blown out, but rarely get the same respect because they aren’t as “sexy”. Actually, the closest any federation has ever come to putting ALL of their qualifying teams through was also in 2002, when US and Mexico advanced, and Costa Rica finished third in a group featuring eventual winners Brazil and 3rd place finishers Turkey. People with elephant memories will also remember that Winston Parks missed an absolute sitter in the dying minutes of their group-stage game vs. Turkey that would have accomplished the feat with a game to spare.

          • KingGoogleyEye says:

            Just to expand on the fallacy of the “strongest teams first” idea: The world cup can’t be only about the strongest teams. If that were it, then we’d have to rename it the UEFA vs CONMEBOL cup.

            I have no problem with Asia getting one more slot than CONCACAF based on having more member nations; both and 10%.

            There has to be a balance between proportional representation and creating a competitive tournament, and I think the current ratios are correct. Only south America and Europe can really make a strong argument for more slots based on team strength anyway.

    • Dirk says:

      That is one of the reasons Copa 2016 is so very important. I can’t believe that no one here even mentions it. You see a lot of posts referring to the 2016 Soccer Olympics, which the rest of the world couldn’t care less about. It seems like the posters here are stuck in time, the Gold Cup, the Olympics and then every 4 years talk, talk, talk about which 3nd rate USMNT player deserves a spot.

      Guys, it is a new day, get with the program.

  4. BOFO for MLS MVP! says:

    Where is Bofo?

    • bodeguero says:

      I can’t believe they left off Cuatemoc. ;)

      So how many of these guys are mercenaries?

      • BOFO for MLS MVP! says:

        Seriously, the world would have no chance if Bofo and Cuahtemoc were throwing dice at the top of that 5-3-2.

      • XYZ says:

        Just read the Mex. Federation is looking at giving Blanco some time on the field for the friendly against Israel. There is still a chance!!!

    • Nimrod says:

      Probably riding the D train, if you know what I mean …

  5. Shawn says:

    why is it taking so long 4 us to release 30 man squad

  6. KingGoogleyEye says:

    I still don’t see Mexico making it out of their group.

    • Mexico will not make out of their group. Mexico are disregarding Croatia which I believd has a number of players with much more international experience and play in good Eroupean teams.
      JS

      • Maykol says:

        How are they disregarding croatia?

      • Jesse says:

        I think you mean Mexican fans are. I would hope the team takes that game seriously.

        You are right on point though, Mexico historically struggles against bigger teams who play through the air. Mandzukic is a real threat in the air. Corluka is 6’4″ and they still have Modric and Srna amongst others.

        • JCC says:

          Mexico tends to do pretty well during the group stage when they’re the underdog. No one thought they would survive their group in 2002 with Italy and Croatia. Same in 98 with Belgium and Netherlands. It’s when they’ve been favorited that they’ve struggled. 2006 and 2010 they got through with 4 points when most people though they would get through comfortably. Personally I see them getting out of this group, and with their history with Brazil, I wouldn’t be surprised if they beat them.

  7. OB Rick says:

    Marquez=A-hole

  8. JayAre says:

    There whole midfield with the exception of Andrés Guardado is still in the freshmen stage of their national team career

    • Patrick2 says:

      Yeah…it’s a little worrying. On the other hand, a lot of those dudes are from America and Leon they play together and against each other a lot. It even seems that in the the post season they’ve drawn each other often recently…so there is a plus that they know each other/their tendencies and preferences – should mesh well in the system.

  9. JayAre says:

    MLS need to focus on bringing in Mexican national team players like Chicharito (break the bank if possible) and Dos Santos. They will revive any franchise both on and off the field.

    • Dozy says:

      Dos Santos already rejected the Galaxy, Chicharito would probably do the same, even Marquez stated that he had to left MLS to go back to the national team.

    • slowleftarm says:

      Yeah just like Marquez was a superstar for RBNY right?

      • JayAre says:

        Yup. dont let the bad attitude fool you. the talent is still there.

        • PSU says:

          Until he gets a red card, the the talent is in the locker room

        • Joamiq says:

          No, no it’s not. Even lots of Mexico fans don’t think so.

          • Maykol says:

            By “lots of mexican fans” do you mean like 12? Because everybody has been impressed with Rafa this season, he has been a monster

            • Jim says:

              Until he loses it against Brazil, cleats Hulk in the chest and goes to the locker room.

              • Maykol says:

                My money is on it being neymar

              • Patrick2 says:

                It’s always a risk with him…but while I’m sure that playing for the second richest man in the world (Carlos Slim) has its perks, it sure seems that going from playing at Barcelona and New York City to blue collar industrial city in North/Central Mexico of less than two million people has had a positive impact on his ego and attitude.

              • Mason says:

                Cleating someone in the chest didn’t get DeJong sent off in 2010, so why would it get Marquez sent off in 2014?

        • Paul says:

          Regardless of his performance on the field, Marquez didn’t really put butts in seats at Red Bull Arena. Neither has Henri. Only Beckham has really had the celebrity necessary to increase the visibility of the league in the media and have a positive impact on attendance.

  10. William the Terror says:

    Herrera “also called up much of the core that helped Mexico qualify for the World Cup in the first place.”

    So, he called up the USMNT reserve players who beat Panama? That’s the core that helped Mexico qualify in the first place.

    • Good Jeremy says:

      Grrr. Shame on me for opening this article, heading to lunch, then coming back and leaving my thoughts without refreshing the article.

      • William the Terror says:

        I’m surprised somebody didn’t jump all over that quote much earlier. I can still hear the great speech the Mexican TV announcer made abusing the El Tri players on the final night of the Hex and telling them how they were saved by Estados Unidos!

  11. Good Jeremy says:

    “While Herrera did include many Europeans, he also called-up much of the core that helped Mexico qualify for the World Cup in the first place.”

    Weird, I thought that Zusi, Davis, Johannsson and Boyd were already cap tied.

  12. Joamiq says:

    Yup. Very odd intro sentence given the high profile absence of Mexico’s best player (not that it’s a surprise, but still, that sentence looks silly given the context).

  13. Patrick2 says:

    Well, supposedly the big worry with Rafa Márquez and Maza Rodriguez is that they might get exposed by athletic attackers….with Héctor Moreno and Diego Reyes, Piojo can take care of that IF he has the guts to use up some of his substitutions on two of his marque defenders.

    Some outlets speculated that dos Santos wouldn’t be called up given that Piojo has stated G. dos Santos isn’t a good fit in his system. Glad that didn’t pan out given he has a knack for breaking down stubborn defenses.

    Supposedly Guardado isn’t what he used to be, and he might not start, but considering that Bayer Leverkusen signed him for peanuts from Valecia where he wasn’t even starting, and he battled his way onto the starting lineup for several games, having him along is a great bonus.

    I just watched the video of Miguel Herrera naming the team, and he definitely called in Marco Fabian.

    Seems like he’s giving himself a lot options to bring in firepower onto the field.

    Only thing I could possibly nit-pick is that it’s too bad Aldo de Nigris wasn’t able to get back up to form. Although Raul Jimenez is big guy, he doesn’t (at least from what little I’ve seen) seem to play as big, and occasionally defenders try to muscle Mexico’s forwards around. de Nigris has a knack for tying up defenders and freeing up Mexico’s other attackers.

  14. MiamiAl says:

    Mexico sucks. They will lose every game. Only because of our charity are they even in the tournament in the first place.

    • Dirk says:

      So you are saying we threw our last game so Mexico would make it? It was charity, we gave it to them? Are you sure?

    • Good Jeremy says:

      eh. They will likely get out of their group, while we will be underdogs in every game. Trash will then be talked.

    • Rob Jones says:

      The USMNT is mediocre and will get exposed hard.