Mexico (National Football)

Film Focus: Miguel Layun's Performance vs. Israel Proves His Value for Mexico

Mexicol's Miguel Layun celebrates after scoring during a friendly soccer match against Israel, in Mexico City, Wednesday, May 28, 2014. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)
Eduardo Verdugo/Associated Press
Karla Villegas GamaFeatured ColumnistMay 30, 2014

Miguel Layun has been a key player for Mexico since he was first capped in 2013 for the Gold Cup, and against Israel he reinforced his importance for the team.

Just two weeks before El Tri debuts in Brazil, manager Miguel Herrera has to make some adjustments and make a decision regarding his starting XI.

Layun should be among those who will play every game; he has earned his place by working hard and taking chances.

He is one of the most consistent Mexican footballers, both with his club and with the national team. Plus, Herrera seems to trust him.

 

Goals

Against Israel he scored twice, both from outside the box, proving that he is not just the type of left-back who joins the attack by sending crosses to the heart of the box and nothing else—Layun propels the offense too.

The first goal came just three minutes before the first half ended.

The play starts with Layun, who looks around and only finds Andres Guardado available.

Credit: UniMas

Credit: UniMas

Guardado tries to go forward, but he has three players in front of him so he gives the ball back to Layun.

Credit: UniMas

The left-back realizes that there's a huge space, so he takes advantage of it. 

Credit: UniMas

With no other option, Layun shoots and scores.

Credit: UniMas

Here's the full play:

The second goal also came from outside the box.

He was waiting in the center of the pitch and again received a pass from Guardado, who couldn't find enough space to continue forward.

Credit: UniMas

Layun faces the midfielder and again runs through a wide-open space. 

Credit: UniMas

He takes his chances again and surprises the goalkeeper, who faltered for the second successive time.

 

Defense

Layun's defensive labor was not compromised despite him joining the attacking zone on a regular basis.

The Club America left-back sent 28 passes; 22 of those were complete, which means he had 79 percent effectiveness.

Israel made six shots; only one of those came from the left flank, but Layun had already left the pitch.

 

Conclusion

Right now there's no other Mexican on the team who can take care of that side like Layun does. He has the coach's trust, is physically fit and has a fantastic touch.

It is refreshing to see someone taking chances and trying to crack the defense with different resources and not just with crosses to the box or forward passes.

 

All data provided by miseleccion.mx (in Spanish) unless otherwise stated.

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