El Tri have another tournament this summer because well, how else is CONCACAF going to make money if they don’t hold the Gold Cup every 2 years. If you’re a fan of Mexico, you will notice several national team stalwarts missing. Some due to injuries, others for personal reasons and one because he pissed off the new coach…
- Carlos Vela: Personal reasons? All he said was he wants to focus on his club and family.
- Chicharito: He recently got married and his wife is due this summer.
- Hector Herrera: Declined a call up, citing burn out after a long club season. HH has played a national team tournament every summer since winning the Gold Medal in 2012. He is also a free agent this summer.
- Hirving Lozano: Suffered a knee injury that will not be healed in time.
- Javier Aquino: Reportedly does not want to be called up anymore to the national team. Not on Gold Cup roster.
- Carlos Salcedo: Injury, might not make the final Gold Cup roster
- Miguel Layun: Kidney infection that requires surgery.
- Tecatito Corona: Not called up by Tata. Likely a repercussion of him staying with Porto during the last international window instead of meeting up with El Tri.
Whoever Tata sends out for Mexico’s opening match at this year’s Gold Cup will be much different than what many would have predicted when he got hired. He has spent much of his time at the helm of the national team trying to figure out who he has at his disposal. It doesn’t help national team players are in a bit of a disagreement with the FMF over image rights. Ultimately, whatever 23 men get called up wont be Mexico’s “strongest” squad. But does it matter?
Not really. This Gold Cup means very little in the grand scheme of things. There isn’t even a spot in the Confederations Cup at stake. It’s a bunch of glorified friendlies that will hopefully end in a match up versus the USMNT. The only purpose it serves is to ease Tata into playing CONCACAF opponents before World Cup Qualifying begins. As for the missing players…
The only absence that “scares” me is Tecatito. His omission seems more like a punishment and if he gets called up afterwards, all is good. He will be 29 by the time the next World Cup kicks and should still be a solid contributor to El Tri. Vela is dead to me. He can continue to dominate MLS but Mexico fans should just pretend he doesn’t exist when it comes to the national team. Mexico’s reliance on Chicha is diminishing and his absence is understandable as his wife is expecting their first child this Summer. HH has earned a break and can be this group’s Guardado in Qatar. He will be 32 at the next World Cup and I expect him to be a starter.
It sucks that this is happening as Tata is starting is run with the national team. Many expected this summer to be a transition towards a younger generation and ultimately, that is exactly what is happening but whoever is Mexico’s coach has to get use to it being a bumpy ride filled with unnecessary drama. Buckle up Tata.