The good, the bad and the ugly of Mexico’s recent friendlies Ochoa is at its level, but who scored the goals?

After the end of Mexico’s last three friendlies in the United States, don’t you see He will return at home with a 2-1 win over Nigeria, a 3-0 loss against Uruguay and a 0-0 draw with Ecuador. With more than 270 minutes of playing, manager Gerardo “Tata” Martino will have learned a lot about his team as they continue their preparations for the 2022 World Cup.

In an effort to shed light on what worked, what didn’t, and what made it special don’t you seeHere are The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of these games.

Good: Guillermo Ochoa and Fernando Beltran

Death, Taxes, and Guillermo Ochoa thriving in Mexico’s Net. Although the Club America goalkeeper turns 37 in July, his reactions are still elite level for the national team and depending on who you ask, they could improve.

During Sunday’s goalless draw with Ecuador, Ochoa was flawless in keeping his South American opponent goalless at Chicago’s Soldier Field. It may not have been the busiest night in the net, but it was again a sign of his secured spot as a starter having previously won five clean sheets in the net. don’t you seeThe last five matches of this year’s World Cup qualifiers.

In midfield, Fernando Beltran, 24, also deserves to be spotlighted. Of all the players who participated in the recent friendlies, Beltran has improved the most. As a starter in both the 2-1 win over Nigeria and the 0-0 draw with Ecuador, and as a substitute in the 3-0 loss to Uruguay, Chivas was a decisive facilitator and excellent in his movement. straight ahead.

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After Sunday’s draw, Martino paid tribute to the midfielder when interviewed by TUDN. “He has very good qualities and he is brave,” the Mexico coach said. “I didn’t even think that Fernando would have played several minutes, a lot of matches and two as a beginner.”

With the friendly series approaching three matches, Beltran was a backup option at best for Mexico. Currently? An eleventh starting point in Qatar may be within reach.

The bad: Nobody scores goals…

Not only is Raul Jimenez struggling to find the target. While many Mexico fans pointed the finger at the Wolverhampton striker, who did not score for him don’t you see In his last two appearances, there appears to be a deeper problem for Martino’s front line. Jimenez surely missed some good chances against Uruguay and Ecuador, but the blame must also fall on the shoulders of those who failed to connect meaningfully with the striker in the penalty area.

Alongside him, Alexis Vega was very calm and winger Jesus “Tecateto” Corona suffered an injury that forced an early substitution in the draw with Ecuador. In his place, Uriel Antona didn’t offer much going forward. Captain and attacking midfielder Andres Guardado hasn’t been as impressive as he should have been, and in support, the high-pressure full-back has been far from a threat over the past few games.

Overall and outside of the win over Nigeria, many of Mexico’s players have really struggled for most of this year when it comes to creating chances and making the decision once at the end of the field. In 10 matches (all competitions) in 2022, El Tri scored only eight goals. However, Martino, who has now seen his side go out without scoring in three of their last four results, doesn’t seem too concerned.

“I was worried when we lost to the USA and Canada [in World Cup qualifying] In mid-November last year, “the coach said after the draw with Ecuador. All that is happening now … is to find the best squad and find the differences that we may need in the World Cup.”

The Ugly: The Return of the Anti-Gay GK Hymn

This is an off-field issue, but it has plagued the national team for some time. After appearing to pull out of Mexico’s friendlies this year, anti-gay chants unfortunately returned during the final stages of the goalless draw with Ecuador. Frustrated by the questionable referee and the lack of a penalty in favor of Mexico, tens of thousands of fans at Soldier Field chanted the chant during the 80th minute, forcing the match to be suspended for nearly five minutes.

Unfortunately, this appearance is not entirely surprising. Mexican football has struggled to curb anti-gay chants, and frankly it didn’t make much effort to do so until FIFA began imposing fines and stadium bans in recent years. Even with renewed public relations campaigns and efforts at both the domestic and international level directed at the fans, the cases of cheering affected Mexico’s 2022 World Cup qualifiers to the point that three of its matches were closed to the public. In Liga MX, it’s not uncommon to hear the cheering at the men’s club level.

Sunday’s event is a reminder that Mexican football is far from over when it comes to dealing with cheering. With the World Cup looming, officials must continue to look for a way to make it a thing of the past rather than something that unfortunately determines the national team’s participation in the tournament.

I look ahead

Mexico’s turnaround will be short, as its 2022-2023 CONCACAF Nations League journey kicks off at home against Suriname on June 11 and away against Jamaica on June 14. For the upcoming matches, Martino got rid of most of the old and usual veterans. to the players of his team. If you read between the lines in the 16 who fell and The 23 who will remain in the League of NationsHowever, it is abundantly clear that many of the additional, alternative and rising options remaining in the 23-player roster – Marcelo Flores, Beltran and Julien Araujo, to name a few – will be battling for the World Cup spots.

With many players looking to improve their image ahead of the World Cup, Mexico will take the field again this Saturday at the Estadio A Coruña in Santos Laguna.

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