Copa America 2015 Team Guide: Mexico
With the 2015 Copa America now less than 10 days away, we continue our countdown to the tournament with our in-depth look at each of the squads in turn, their key names and what to expect from them.
This time it is the turn of Mexico—one of the two invited nations from the CONCACAF region, along with Jamaica—who we look at as they are set to do battle on two international fronts over the summer.
Chile 2015 should be a tremendous tournament with several nations having hopes of making an impact on the latter stages, so who will Mexico turn to in order to join them?
Mexico have named two full squads for this summer, one for the Copa America and one for the Gold Cup. ESPN FC have the full list of Miguel Herrera’s chosen 23 for the tournament in Chile.
Goalkeepers: Jose Corona (Cruz Azul), Alfredo Talavera (Toluca), Meliton Hernandez (Veracruz)
Defenders: George Corral (Queretaro), Gerardo Flores (Cruz Azul), Rafael Marquez (Verona), Hugo Ayala (UANL), Julio Dominguez (Cruz Azul), Carlos Salcedo (Guadalajara), Miguel Angel Herrera (Pachuca), Adrian Aldrete (Santos Laguna), Efrain Velarde (Monterrey)
Midfielders: Mario Osuna (Queretaro), Juan Carlos Medina (Atlas), Javier Guemez (Tijuana), Jesus Manuel Corona (FC Twente), Javier Aquino (Rayo Vallecano), Luis Montes (Leon), Marco Fabian (Guadalajara)
Forwards: Raul Jimenez (Atletico Madrid), Eduardo Herrera (UNAM), Enrique Esqueda (UANL), Vicente Matias Vuoso (Chiapas).
Miguel Herrera took over late in 2013 to help Mexico reach the World Cup after a faltering start to qualification, before they impressed in reaching the last 32 at Brazil 2014.
Having spent all his managerial career in his home nation, Herrera is understandably happy to include home-based players he is familiar with in his squads, an especially important trait given he needs to juggle in excess of 40 players this summer between the two tournaments.
Herrera won a title in club football with America before taking up the reigns with his nation, and Herrera will believe he can add an international title to his CV this summer.
It appears he has placed more emphasis and importance on the Gold Cup than the Copa America—but he will still hope for a positive performance from this chosen squad in Chile.
Rafael Marquez is something of a legend in the modern game, having plied his trade with the likes of Barcelona, Monaco and now Verona in Italy. A centre-back with tremendous ability to read the game, even at 36 years of age he is tough to get past, while his aggression and leadership make him an indispensable part of the team.
He’ll be in place to guide this mixed Mexico squad as far as possible being comfortably the most experienced member of the squad with well over a century of caps.
At the World Cup last year he showed good performance levels and the same again will be required if Mexico are to get through the group stage and impact on the knockouts.
One to Watch
Raul Jimenez has had a season to forget in Spain with Atletico Madrid, playing less than 600 minutes in La Liga as he struggled to make an impact, per WhoScored.com. He scored just once in that time. As poor as his output was in Spain, there’s no doubting that he is a striker capable of hitting the back of the net if he gets service in the final third.
As one of the most experienced players in this squad he’s likely to be a starter—and he has a lot to prove after his past 10 months in Spain.
Jimenez needs to rediscover form for his own career as much as for his national team’s campaign, but the by-product of the 24-year-old being determined to have an impact could be another latter-stage appearance for El Tri.
Mexico have taken part at the Copa America, as invited guests, on eight occasions since their first appearance in 1993. Only once did they fail to reach the last eight—last time out.
Last four: Five
Most recent finishes:
2011: Group stage
2007: Third place
1999: Third place
12 June, 20:30 (CLT)—Estadio Sausalito, Vina del Mar
Mexico vs. Bolivia
15 June, 20:30 (CLT)—Estadio Nacional, Santiago
Chile vs. Mexico
19 June, 18:00 (CLT)—Estadio El Teniente, Rancagua
Mexico vs. Ecuador