Mexico vs. Croatia: Date, Time, Live Stream and TV Schedule for 2017 Friendly

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistMay 27, 2017

LAS VEGAS, NV - FEBRUARY 07:  Head coach Juan Carlos Osorio of Mexico speaks during a news conference at UNLV ahead of the Mexico National Team's inaugural match of its 2017 U.S. tour on February 9, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Mexico will play Iceland on February 10 at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas.  (Photo by David J. Becker/Getty Images)
David J. Becker/Getty Images

Neither Mexico nor Croatia will field their strongest possible lineups in Saturday's friendly encounter at the Los Angeles Coliseum, but that doesn't mean the summer showdown will be a match to miss all the same.

Croatia manager Ante Cacic has ample reason to rest his key men considering his side will face Iceland on June 11 in the latest leg of their bid to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

Similarly, El Tri will play two World Cup qualifiers in the space of three days at the beginning of June—against Honduras and the United States—but not before they face Croatia and the Republic of Ireland in two friendly fixtures.

While neither team will want to suffer any untimely injuries heading into a busy summer, Saturday's Los Angeles encounter will also be a prime opportunity for both bosses to test out some of the rougher diamonds among their squads.

Read on for all the vital viewing information ahead of Saturday's clash, complete with fixture details and a preview of which players to keep an eye on.

      

Date: Saturday, May 27

Time: 7:30 p.m. ET / 12:30 a.m. BST (Sunday, May 28)

Venue: Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles

Live Stream: Fox Soccer 2 GO (U.S.), fuboTV (U.S.)

TV Info: Fox Sports 1 (U.S.), Univision Deportes (U.S.)

Mexico vs. Croatia Form Guide
MexicoCroatia
Trinidad and Tobago 0-1 MexicoEstonia 3-0 Croatia
Mexico 2-0 Costa RicaCroatia 1-0 Ukraine
Mexico 1-0 IcelandChina 1-1 Croatia
Panama 0-0 MexicoChile 1-1 Croatia
Soccerway

            

Giovani dos Santos, Mexico

Now behind only Rafael Marquez and Andres Guardado in Mexico caps accumulated among the current squad, Giovani dos Santos is beginning to take responsibility as one of El Tri's elder statesmen ahead of Saturday's Croatian clash.

And the versatile forward has been preparing in fine fashion while on duty with Los Angeles Galaxy in Major League Soccer, as illustrated by OptaJack (although his record has since improved to three goals in his last three outings):

The most recent of those strikes was a goal-of-the-season contender in Sunday's 2-1 victory against Minnesota United, posted by L.A. Galaxy's official Twitter account:

While Dos Santos' international record of 18 goals in 95 appearances for the national team isn't the most prolific, there's no doubting the winger's overall contribution to the cause and the resource he brings in attack.

The former Barcelona and Tottenham Hotspur starlet also promises to benefit from manager Juan Carlos Osorio's reliance on squad rotation, a tactic that takes the spotlight off individual stars.

He told Latin American broadcaster TDN (h/t Goal's Jon Arnold): 

"As the leader of this sporting project and this process, I have to make the decisions at the end, and I take that on. But I also understand that everyone has the right to express their opinion. Basically, we believe more in the collective than the individual, specifically that the individual has to be available serve the collective. If its the other way around, there's no chance of success."

             

Mateo Kovacic, Croatia

Kovacic has enjoyed a good season with Real despite settling for a bit-part role at times.
Kovacic has enjoyed a good season with Real despite settling for a bit-part role at times.Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

After a season spent on the fringes at Real Madrid, Mateo Kovacic can expect to make his return to prominence when he comes back into the Croatia fold this week.

Kovacic has played the full 90 minutes on just 12 occasions for his club this term, but that hasn't prevented the playmaker from boosting his renown as one of La Liga's most potent dribbling forces in particular, per WhoScored.com:

What's more, Yahoo's Andrew Gaffney has found immense value in the central midfielder, even though Real manager Zinedine Zidane has looked largely to other creative assets in Kovacic's stead:

With only a week to run until the UEFA Champions League final in Cardiff, Cacic may be under orders to ensure Luka Modric's involvement against Mexico is limited, but the same may not be true for his heir, Kovacic.

If El Tri's often suffocating tactics will allow, the 23-year-old has the potential to run rampant in the prime playmaker role, making this a potential chance to strut his stuff as a weapon on par with Modric, as opposed to his inferior.

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