The Mexican National Team has their roster ready to face Nigeria in an international friendly this Wednesday, March 5, 2014 (5:30 PM Pacific). The game to be held at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta is expected to be sold-out to its full 72,000 seat capacity. The team coached by Miguel Herrera will face an important game in their Brazil 2014 World Cup preparation, as it will be the only FIFA Match Day prior to June’s competition.
Coach Herrera named his squad for the international friendly against Nigeria with the intention of using the Mexican players abroad in Europe. A total of 9 players with national team talent participate in European leagues, but from those, only 8 are considered to form part of the World Cup as striker Carlos Vela last month shut down any possibility of returning to the Mexican team for this World Cup.
Therefore, Mexico named a squad with 8 players from Europe: Guillermo Ochoa, Hector Moreno, Andres Guardado, Diego Reyes, Hector Herrera, Javier Aquino, Javier Hernandez, and Giovani Dos Santos. This last player (Dos Santos), suffered a calf injury during the weekend in a match with Villarreal, preventing him from playing with ‘El Tri’ against Nigeria. He has been replaced by Club America striker, Raul Jimenez.
The rest of the Mexican squad is composed of Liga MX players, where the most significant names are those of Carlos Peña, Alan Pulido, and Isaac Brizuela. Left defensive winger, Miguel Layun, was also called, but he will miss the match due to a shoulder injury he suffered 7 days ago in a game with his team, Club America.
Mexico 23-Man Roster Against Nigeria
Goalkeepers: Guillermo Ochoa (Ajaccio), Jesus Corona (Cruz Azul), and Moises Muñoz (America)
Defenders: Hector Moreno (Espanyol), Diego Reyes (Porto), Andres Guardado (Bayer Leverkusen), Paul Aguilar (America), Francisco Rodríguez (America), Miguel Ponce (Toluca), Miguel Layun (America), Enrique Perez (Atlas), Juan Carlos Valenzuela (America), and Rafael Marquez (Leon).
Midfielders: Javier Aquino (Villarreal), Hector Herrera (Porto), Jose Juan Vazquez (Leon), Juan Carlos Medina (America), Carlos Peña (Leon), Isaac Brizuela (Toluca), and Luis Montes (Leon).
Forwards: Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez (Manchester United), Giovani Dos Santos (Villarreal), Alan Pulido (Tigres), and Oribe Peralta (Santos).