Besides the fact that it is a Tuesday night and you likely have nothing else better to do, there are other reason to watch this game.
THE LINE UP
Mier Ayala Venegas
Who wants to play?
I know Bolivia is going through a transition aka they are kind of terrible at the moment, but I don’t expect a 5-0 rout. Not with the lineup Piojo has selected. I fully expect Mexico to win but it remains to be seen how quickly this lineup can gel. This game intrigues me more than the Chile game because it should shine a light on the next 11. Mexico has a good starting 11 but the next 11 is where Piojo needs to find players to plug in. He has said he basically needs 2 national teams next summer and the time to find those players is now. While the last game I was focused on how the team did, I will be mostly focused on how individual players perform this game. Mexico needs depth and with the lineup against Bolivia, these players will get their chance to show what they can do.
With Corona currently out of the national team picture and Talavera hurt, Mexico is in need of a reliable #2. Moises has the added advantage of knowing Herrera from his Club America days. It shows Herrera has a lot of trust and respect in Moises and I can see him becoming the fall back option after Talavera. I would not be surprised if Jose Antonio Rodriguez is called up next camp to see if he can provide some depth going forward. He has been having a good season and with that Chivas defense, he has been continually tested. Having a young promising keeper in national league camp is always a good thing. If there is one thing I do like about Klinsmann, he always brings an extra young keeper. The kid usually doesn’t see the field but I think it provides invaluable experience to him.
Playing in a 3 man back line is not the same as playing in a 4 man back line. While some teams dabble in playing 3 central defenders, it is still rare. That makes it much harder for Herrera to find players that are comfortable and experienced playing with only 3 in the back. With none of his WC back line available, he is in search of defenders who can be successful in his formation. With Moreno being hurt and El Kaiser/Maza getting up there in age, spots along the back line are definitely there for the taking. Diego Reyes is the one defender I was hoping to see this camp but his lack of playing time at Porto is not helping his calls for future national team appearances. With Reyes gone, my attention will be on Hiram Mier. Mier was a player getting consistent call ups in the 18 months before the WC but an injury ended his chances of being on the final 23 man roster. I’m hoping to see him bounce back with a solid performance for the national team. Rodolfo Pizarro is another player to pay close attention to. He does not turn 20 for another month and has already established himself at Pachuca. He loves to get forward and should get plenty of chances to tonight against Bolivia.
Rios will command the center of the field with Aquino and Fabian to his sides. Aquino has arguably been the best Mexican in Europe this season. He will be a key player for Rayo Vallecano and has shown he is up for the challenge. Maybe he will tell Fabian stories of playing in Europe. Gallito has been so good in the middle and so important, it is a bit scary to realize he won’t be able to play every game. Piojo will need to find someone who can somewhat replicate what he does. Tonight, it will be Rios taking the test.
Unfortunately, we have seen what Chuletita did on Saturday or didn’t do. So most fans will adjust their expectations of him accordingly. Cubo on the other hand, will be making his senior team debut. Expectations are high for him and that is nothing new for Torres. Ever since he was suppose to be the next Chicharito, pressure has been ridiculously high. The best career move he ever made was moving to MLS and playing for Vergara’s failed pet project in Chivas USA. He has flourished away from the disaster that is his parent club of Chivas Guadalajara. Some say Carlos Fierro should go on loan to find his footing, his brace this weekend ensures that will not be the case. This team is clearly in search of goals, while I don’t think either Orozco or Cubo are a long term answer. You can never have too many forwards who can score goals on the national team. Or maybe I’m just a huge fan of Cubo’s goal celebration.