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2014 World Cup: Few Surprises In Mexico Squad

Mexico 23 man World Cup squad announced

Photo Courtesy of the Official Seleccion Nacional de México Facebook Page

Leading up to the announcement of the 23 man squad which will represent Mexico at the 2014 World Cup, there was much speculation as to whom Miguel Herrera would call and whom he would not call as part of the 23 man squad. In the past week, several lists by various media members were released proclaiming that according to their sources, those on their list would be the 23 that Miguel Herrera would name. Some of the speculation which was swirling within the past week as it related to Mexico’s 23 man squad for the World Cup squad were who would be the goalkeeper that would miss out, in particular Guillermo Ochoa, whether or not Andres Guardado would be named, and if it was possible that Giovani Dos Santos would be left off the squad.

Other questions and speculation which was bantered about leading up to the announcement of the squad was would defender Javier ‘Maza’ Rodriguez would be left off, defender Carlos Salcido would be a surprise call up, and would Javier Aquino be left off with Marco Fabian in essence stealing his spot on the 23 man squad. In the end as Miguel Herrera named his 23 man squad, some of the speculation was either confirmed or denied with the announcement. In the end, the main over arching point was that this 23 man squad list which will represent Mexico at the World Cup contained no major surprise as there were only a couple of minor surprises at the end of the day.

The speculation of who would be the three goalkeepers named has been one that has been a much debated topic in Mexico since the beginning of the year. At different times the three goalkeepers speculated as to whom would be named changing depending on whom you asked and who was playing well at that time. Leading up to the announcement, it was clear that Jesus Corona and Alfredo Talavera were locks with Club America goalkeeper Moises Munoz and Gulliermo Ochoa fighting it out for the final spot in goal. In the end, Ochoa ended up joining Corona and Talavera as the goalkeepers headed to Brazil and now the speculation will revolve around who should be the starter.

In defense, the only questions leading up to the squad announcement was would ‘Maza’ Rodriguez be left off the squad list in favor of someone like Hugo Ayala, and who would be the player to be left off with the speculated inclusion of Carlos Salcido, who had not been named to any of Miguel Herrera’s squads in his time as coach of ‘El Tri’. With the announcement, we now know that ‘Maza’ Rodruguez will be on the squad, Andres Guardado is also included on the squad, and the inclusion of the veteran Carlos Salcido means that Toluca fullback/wing back Miguel Ponce who has had a fine season ends up being the player who misses out.

In midfield, the inclusion of Cruz Azul midfielder Marco Fabian who after a rough 2013 has had a resurgence with Cruz Azul in the first half of 2014 came as a mild surprise given the speculation leading up to the announcement. It is clear that Fabian was preferred to a Javier Aquino in that Fabian is a unique playmaker in the midfield as opposed to Aquino who is more of a winger and thus in Miguel Herrera’s preferred tactical formation, he has no natural position. With the forwards, despite some potential Giovani Dos Santos rumblings in recent days, the main question from late January until as of a few days ago was who would go between Raul Jimenez and Alan Pulido. In the end, both forwards through their play find themselves included in the 23 man squad headed to Brazil.

The first group of players named to the 23 man squad will begin training camp on Monday the 12th with the full squad being together by no later than May 25th. Mexico will play a sending off friendly on May 28th at the Azteca Stadium against Israel and then head to the United States to continue its preparation for the tournament with a series of three friendlies. Mexico will open its 2014 World Cup by taking on Cameroon in Group A play on June 13th.

Goalkeepers

Jesus Corona- Cruz Azul (Liga MX)
Guillermo Ochoa- AC Ajaccio (France Ligue 1)
Alfredo Talavera- Toluca (Liga MX)

Defenders

Rafael MarquezLeon (Liga MX)
Hector MorenoRD Espanyol (Spain La Liga)
Diego ReyesFC Porto (Portuguese Primeira Liga)
Andres Guardado- Bayer Leverkusen (German Bundesliga)
Miguel Layun– Club America (Liga MX)
Paul Aguilar– Club America (Liga MX)
Javier Rodriguez- Club America (Liga MX)
Carlos Salcido- Tigres UANL (Liga MX)

Midfielders

Carlos Peña– Leon (Liga MX)
Luis Montes– Leon (Liga MX)
Juan Jose Vasquez– Leon (Liga MX)
Isaac Brizuela– Toluca (Liga MX)
Hector Herrera– FC Porto (Portuguese Primeira Liga)
Juan Carlos Medina– Club America (Liga MX)
Marco Fabian- Cruz Azul (Liga MX)

Forwards

Javier HernandezManchester United (English Premier League)
Giovani Dos Santos- Villarreal (Spanish La Liga)
Oribe PeraltaSantos Laguna (Liga MX)
Raul Jimenez- Club America (Liga MX)
Alan Pulido- Tigres UANL (Liga MX)

Lucas Carreras is a contributing Liga MX and Mexican National Team writer for Stoppage Time Soccer. You can follow Lucas on Twitter by following him @maldini3fan

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