Mexico could be hit with an ice cold bucket of water tonight titled, "Elimination from Brazil's 2014 World Cup." Without the presence of Carlos Vela, who has undoubtedly made an impression in Spain's La Liga, and Guillermo Ochoa, Mexico will have to rely on players like the famous 'Chicharito' Hernandez and Hector Moreno.
Mexico has made some inconsistent and negative headlines recently. The green team has only had one impressive match as of late and that was a friendly against Ivory Coast. So, the question remains, what is Mexico's problem? A lot of things, actually. First off, the pressure that manager 'Chepo' de la Torre has on his back seems to have really gotten to him. During games, the former Chivas and Toluca coach seems to have an incredibly nerve-wrecking look on his face. Who wouldn't? The whole world is waiting for a shocker tonight.
Chepo's Main Struggle: Finding a Consistent Line-Up
Correct me if I'm wrong, but going from a consistent league coach to a national coach is not an easy job. 'Chepo' is a smart man who knows what he's doing, in a league match. The problem with the manager's job as of late is finding a line-up that actually works and produces consistent results. What Chepo needs to focus on is really playing everyone in their natural positions. For example, Hiram Mier, the great young defender seems to be lost half of the time. Mier isn't playing in his normal position, which is being a central defender, and is instead being placed as a left back. The perfect example is Mexico vs. Brazil: Neymar's goal (see video here). Mier is the one that is supposed to be defending Neymar, but instead takes the position of a central defender and therefore leaves that big open space for the striker to well, strike it past everyone and into the back of the net.
If I could speak to Chepo myself, I'd tell him to do his research and really try to see where the players feel the most comfortable. There are a lot of players that are flexible, but some are true to their position. I would tell him to also switch 'Maza' Rodriguez and Mier and see what that does.
What Does Mexico Need to do Tonight?
There is a lot of sports psychology going into this game, I mean a lot. Put yourself in their shoes, the world is watching and waiting for you to fail and give a big shock of being eliminated. You're a group of young players going into a tough game wanting to accomplish the impossible. That's just it, it's not impossible.
What the team needs to do is, as I mentioned previously, find a good line-up for tonight. Play the players in their natural position. If the players are within familiar surroundings, the more comfortable they will feel. They also need to maintain a positive mindset, but most importantly play to Mexico's level, reach that full potential, and not play down to the other team's level as they have done in the past. I'm not saying Honduras is a poor team, but Mexico needs to focus on what they need to do to put that ball in the back of the net versus pressuring themselves.
Stay tuned for a reaction to tonight's game. Meanwhile, I'll try to maintain my nerves.Back to the Soccer Newsfeed