MEXICO CITY (AFP) – Good football did not accompany the Mexican national team around 2021. Rushing into the World Cup qualifying round and being defeated three times by his staunch opponent, even El Tree faces hurdles imposed by his fans.
And from January, when the last eight match of the CONCACAF Championship against Qatar resumes, Argentine coach Gerardo Martino will have many tasks to do.
In principle, he should avoid complicating the tie to the point of jeopardizing its continuity.
“It is the worst year in our administration,” Tata Martino admitted after a 2-2 draw with Chile in a friendly that marked the end of Mexico’s activity in 2021. “From 2019, 2020 and 2021, in results and performance. It is the worst year in my tenure. “.
Mexico’s final episode of this year’s draw came on a bleak and cold November night in Edmonton, with Canada winning 2-1. With this, the Mexican team fell to third place, the last to give direct pass to Qatar, thanks to a better goal difference over Panama, which now has a ticket to the play-off against Oceania.
Four days before falling to the Canadian national team, Martino’s team suffered another defeat to the United States. The classic regional contender has given three setbacks to the Tri in 2021, including the first CONCACAF Nations League final and the Gold Cup between June and August.
So Mexico’s other goal is to limit the loss of regional importance to its northern neighbor.
The next duel between the Mexicans and the Americans is scheduled for March on the penultimate date of the tie. To reach this commitment more quietly – or even to reach – Martineau is counting on the good returns on the tripartite date that begins on January 27 with a visit to Jamaica.
This will be followed by two home matches, the 30th match against Costa Rica and on February 2nd against Panama. But Mexico will not have an audience in those matches, since FIFA endorsed the penalty it had imposed for its fans’ anti-gay cries in two previous appraisal matches.
A string of good results will leave the Mexican team with one foot in Qatar. If adversity increases, it will revive the ghosts of the 2014 match against Brazil, when Mexico dismissed coaches Jose Manuel de la Torre and Victor Manuel Vucic. Already under the direction of Miguel Herrera, he saved with his fingernails a passport in the play-off against New Zealand.
Canada looms large as a stunning and undefeated captain of the eight as they attempt their first World Cup since 1986.
Led by Lille striker Jonathan David and Bayern Munich defender Alphonse Davies, the Canadian team scored 16 points, one point ahead of the United States and two points from Mexico.
Despite their victories over Mexico this year, the United States has shown a tendency to slip into a draw, as it seeks to wash that honor after losing the 2018 World Cup.
With a generational turnover that includes several promising players, the US team today looks competent at home but shaky in its visits.
Recently, the bullets blew and tied in Jamaica. He won 10 of 12 points at home, but only 5 of 12 on someone else’s court.
He has three matches left as host. If you win them, your claim and return to the World Cup is virtually guaranteed.
“I think we’re on the right track. Basically we have to get the players to gain experience,” said coach Greg Berhalter. “He learns as you go.”
And stay healthy. Christian Pulisic missed the November matches due to a sprained left ankle. Gio Reina has a problem in the right thigh and Serginho Dest due to a back ailment.
On the next tripartite appointment, the United States will host El Salvador, visit Canada and host Honduras.
The Panama national team, which completes the first half in the eight shape and currently has the final match card, is a team that does not give up. On November 12, he reversed Honduras’ 2-0 result in just over 10 minutes, and ended up winning 3-2 in San Pedro Sula.
As a native on Day 16, it took two minutes to turn the score 1-0 at home and win 2-1 over El Salvador.
This return makes the Panamanian team dream of its second consecutive World Cup participation, having made its debut only in 2018.
“Our ambition is to be in the second World Cup with Panama, and we are working to achieve that,” Spain-Denmark coach Thomas Christiansen recently confirmed.
Five points below Panama is Costa Rica. The two teams clash on the 27th, in a match that could include Ticos in contention to go to Qatar or it could draw an insurmountable boundary between the two teams who will play something and those who will remain mere spectators in this octagon.
Jamaica’s task looks more complicated, as they took a seven-point lead from the playoffs a month after facing Mexico, after coach Theodore Whitmore was sacked this month.
El Salvador holds the penultimate position, one point below Jamaica and three points above Honduras, which in October only appointed Colombian Hernan Dario Gómez as the coach favoring the project design for 2026.
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