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A talented collection; experienced heads like Carlos Salcido and Gerardo Torrado contrast with mercurial stars such as Andres Guardado, Giovani dos Santos and the recalled Pablo Barrera.
Likely to devastate with pace, and keen to dominate contests down the flanks before feeding the clinical Chicharito, who may or may not be supported by Aldo de Nigris.
Questions do surround a collection of central defenders who have struggled to equip themselves for international competition.
Under pressure after a run of uninspiring draws in the early stages of the year, showed resolve and character to fight back and secure a 2-2 draw against Nigeria in a recent friendly.
The Star: Javier Hernandez
Demonstrated his class once again in the recent friendly draw with Nigeria, scoring a goal in each half. The second was an exquisite illustration of poaching play—clinical finishing allied with intelligent positioning and intuitive movement.
Has been lost, to an extent, in the furore and paraphernalia of Robin van Persie’s maiden season at Old Trafford, but hasn’t missed many opportunities to show his irresistible goal-scoring ability.
The latest in a long line of devastating Mexican frontmen, and the perfect foil for the myriad of creative talents that support him, Hernandez could be set for a big summer.
The Boss: Jose Manuel de la Torre
A former international, de la Torre enjoyed a storied playing career at a number of Mexico’s top clubs, as well as Spanish side Real Oviedo.
Has been managing El Tri since 2010, following stints with Toluca and former club, Guadalajara. Major questions are being asked of his stewardship following underwhelming progress in the World Cup qualifiers.
How they got there
Qualified after winning the 2011 Gold Cup; their second consecutive victory and their third consecutive final spot.
Beat long-time rivals the United States 4-2 in an exciting final at the Pasadena Rose Bowl, with goals from Pablo Barrera, Andres Guardado and Giovani dos Santos.
Been there before
Regular qualifiers since the competition’s inception in 1992, Mexico were champions in 1999, when they hosted the tournament. They beat this year’s opposition Brazil 4-3 in a thrilling final.
Now 24, has the time finally come for Giovani dos Santos to rise to the occasion and steal the show as he once promised to do as a youngster? An experienced campaigner at international level, with 62 apps, has begun to show what he is capable of for Mallorca, in 2011’s Gold Cup triumph and for the national side at the Olympics—can he bring some of these top performances to the Confederations Cup?
Likely to battle it out for second place in the group with the Italians; the opening game between the two, on the 16th June, is absolutely vital. The Mexicans look set to take the tournament very seriously, and I can see them pipping the Azzurri to a quarterfinal berth.