Mexico’s task in front of 80,000 plus supporters at the Rose Bowl had been clearly defined following Uruguay’s shock 1-0 defeat to Venezuela earlier in the day. Win and they advanced to the Copa America quarter-finals. Thanks to a powerful header from Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez and a neat finish from Oribe Peralta, Mexico have guaranteed their place in the Copa's knockout rounds.
Mexico National Team
Mexico have selected Guillermo Ochoa, Jesus Corona and Alfredo Talavera as their goalkeepers for the 2016 Copa America, a reliable group that has amassed 135 international appearances between them. Such is the strength of the position for Mexico that the highly underrated Jonathan Orozco was unable to make the squad.
However, the most promising and talented goalkeeper for El Tri might be the one lining up across from Orozco in the Liga MX Clausura semi-finals, Hugo Gonzalez.
The 23 players who will represent the Mexico National Team at the Copa America Centenario have been announced, and there were more than a few controversies. Here's the final roster (barring injury):
Mexico National Team 23-Man Copa America Roster
—Memo Ochoa (Malaga)
—Jose Corona (Cruz Azul)
—Alfredo Talavera (Toluca)
—Rafa Marquez (Atlas)
—Diego Reyes (Real Sociedad)
—Hector Moreno (PSV Eindhoven)
—Paul Aguilar (Club America)
—Miguel Layun (Porto)
It's been a good stretch for Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez recently, award-wise. He was named the Bundesliga Player of the Month for November, then named the Bundesliga Player of the Week for the first week of December.
And now he has been named CONCACAF's Best Male Player for 2015, beating out Costa Rica's Bryan Ruiz and fellow Mexican Andres Guardado.
Chicharito's biggest performance in a Mexico jersey came in Mexico's 3-2 win over the United States in the Confederations Cup playoff in October, in which he scored Mexico's first goal.
Real Sociedad has had a gem in their midst since 2011. A gem that Arsene Wenger failed to recognize at Premier League giants, Arsenal. Carlos Vela has had a tumultuous professional career thus far. He’s been one of Mexico’s shining lights in Europe ever since he finished top-scorer in Mexico’s U-17 World Cup win back in 2007. That light has dimmed every once and a while and most recently has been shining bright at Real Sociedad. The Cancun native has had 167 appearances for Sociedad and has scored 59 goals since his loan from Arsenal became permanent at the La Liga side.
At 16 years of age, Carlos Vela walked onto a soccer pitch in Peru with all the weight of Mexico on his shoulders. The Mexican National Team had finally made it the final of the U-17 World Cup. Not once in Mexico’s history had a Mexican national team made it to the finals of a world tournament. No pressure. No pressure at all for Carlitos, who would go on to lead the young Mexican national team to glory against Brazil, scoring their first of the match and leading Mexico to a 3-0 scoreline against the tournament favorites.
Miguel "El Piojo" Herrera is the coach of the Mexican national team, but maybe not for much longer after reports surfaced that he punched TV Azteca commentator Christian Martinoli in the neck at the Philadelphia airport Sunday.
Miguel Herrera reportedly lawyering up. Being told by colleagues he assaulted a journalist last night after Gold Cup final. #Developing
Seriously, is the Gold Cup fixed? Miguel Herrera earlier claimed various forces were against Mexico in the tournament, but now it looks like various forces (and by "forces, we mean "referees") want Mexico to win win the Gold Cup more than they want anything in the world.
First, there was this penalty, which we'll call "dubious."
I can see it both ways. But the Costa Rican team, and various Costa Rican politicians, were pissed.
It's actually sort of a slight on Mexico that they didn't beat Cuba by more last night.
El Tri had 44 shots on the night, but only sic of those went in.
Oribe Peralta had a hat trick for Mexico, with Carlos Vela, Andres Guardado and Giovani dos Santos also scoring.
Cuba was down to 16 players after six players (plus the manager) were held up in Cuba and one defected after arriving in the United States.
El Tri continues to gear up for this summer’s busy schedule with a win against Ecuador. Chicharito scored the only goal, but what a goal it was.