Mexico’s Summer To Forget
Mexico’s national teams have had a Summer to forget. Every national team representing Mexico at a large international tournament has suffered failure.
With Mexico failing on all fronts this Summer, fans have emitted a collective groan of disappointment.
The Mexican saying, “They played like never before but lost like always,” can’t even be used in these circumstances. It’s been more of “there they go again, blowing their opportunity for international glory.”
Mexico has suffered a dramatic drop in their international success. Even at the youth level where they were renowned for having strong youth teams and for winning major trophies.
In what is their last opportunity to win a tournament this summer, Mexico goes into the Gold Cup with a lot of pressure considering all others that have represented their shirt have failed. It all comes down to one last attempt. Can Mexico’s men’s national team get redemption in the 2015 Gold Cup this Summer?
The first tournament that Mexico let slip from their grasp was the Toulon Tournament.
The Toulon Tournament, which Mexico won in 2012, showcases some of the best young talent the world has to offer.
It consist of 10 teams, two groups of five. Mexico failed to make it to the final of the tournament , coming in third in Group B.
They tied their first game against Ivory Coast 1-1 and won their next two games against England and China, but failure to beat 10-man Morocco in their last match cost them the opportunity to play in the final or even the third place match.
Not only did Mexico fail to make an impact in this tournament but the U.S.A., their great rival, would go on to have a great tournament, finishing in third place. France would go on to win the tournament.
Mexico’s lack of luck continued into the U-20 World Cup in New Zealand. Mexico was placed in Group D alongside Serbia, Uruguay and Mali.
The farthest Mexico has ever gone in this competition is second place in its first edition in 1977, losing in penalties against the Soviet Union.
They’ve come close since (winning third place in 2011) but they haven’t reached a final since.
In the 2015 edition, they came in fourth place in their group, only getting three points from their group stage matches.
Mexico lost their first match against Mali 2-0. They followed that loss up with a 2-1 win against Uruguay, giving fans hope that they would turn things around, but their World Cup ended with a 2-0 loss to Serbia in their last match.
Serbia would go on to win the group (and, eventually, the tournament) and Uruguay would follow them into the later stages of the tournament.
Once again the U.S.A performed much better than their rivals, Mexico, taking on Serbia in the quarterfinals and only losing to the eventual winners in penalties.
El Tri femenil participated in the 2015 Women’s World Cup in Canada and also put on a dismal display.
In the first match, they took on a technically gifted Colombia and tied the match 1-1. The rest of the tournament was a nightmare for a team that has yet to win a game at a World Cup. They weren’t able to build on that good performance, losing to England 2-1 and getting obliterated 5-0 by France in their final match.
They came in fourth in their group and would go home with only a point to their name.
Mexico’s lack of success continued into the Copa America 2015 in Chile. Miguel Herrera even admitted that failure to beat Ecuador in their final match would be a complete failure on El Tri’s part.
They went on to lose that match and crash out of the Copa America, placing fourth in their group. That was the third time a Mexican team placed fourth in a group this summer, the other times being the U-20 World Cup and the Women’s World Cup.
Mexico began their Copa America campaign with a 1-1 tie against Bolivia, a result that did not bode well for El Tri. Their next match against Chile also ended in a draw (3-3) but it instilled hope and excitement around the national team.
Unfortunately that was short-lived. Mexico would go on to lose their final group stage match against Ecuador 2-1, ending their tournament in complete disappointment.
It has indeed been a summer to forget and Mexico will have to turn it up a notch if they want to end their Summer on a good note. The Gold Cup is their last chance to win a major tournament this Summer, and they will have to give it their all to do so.
The U.S.A. will predictably be their biggest challengers but Costa Rica will also pose a threat to Mexico’s chances of winning the tournament.
Mexico’s men’s national team, what many consider their “A” team, has been training and gearing up for the competition. They took on a spirited and competitive Costa Rica team recently and ended the match in a 2-2 tie.
El Piojo is clearly trying to figure out how to make his star attackers work together. With Carlos Vela, Gio dos Santos, and Chicharito to consider, Miguel has a lot of tinkering to do with the line-up.
They’ll have to perform well because anything but a great Gold Cup campaign will have a long-term effect on Mexico’s men’s national team.