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Mexico Vs. Paraguay: Chepo De La Torre's Formation Considerations For The Mexican National Team

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Based on Mexico's game against Bosnia-Herzegovina in February and the way Chepo de la Torre set up his teams over the years at Toluca, it's difficult to see what might change in the national team under Chepo from what Javier Aguirre did at the World Cup and what Sven Goran Eriksson did in qualifying, at least in a tactical sense. Obviously, Sven's biggest problems stemmed from cultural differences and the seemingly random nature of his team selection, while Aguirre didn't really do anything wrong during his interim manager stint. Efrain Flores and Enrique Meza are hardly worth mentioning, but they didn't mess with things too much. We'll see what Chepo opts to do against Paraguay, but we can probably make a good guess.

The formation de jour around the world these days is the 4-2-3-1, and the Mexican national team don't appear to be an exception to this. However, Chepo hasn't played it in a way that is conducive to the Mexican player pool. Edgar Pacheco was his man in the hole against Bosnia, while Sinha was that player for years at Toluca. Neither of these players is very similar to the likely candidates to play that position for Mexico, Giovani Dos Santos and Carlos Vela.

Of course, those aren't Chepo's only options, but anything else is a serious stretch. He's called in Sinha, but Sinha is 34 years old. He's obviously not a long term solution. Ahead of the Gold Cup, I assume that Chepo would like to utilize players who will be in the national team setup for some time. 

Sinha is aging, and there isn't another player like him in the player pool. Nor is there Mexico's version of Wesley Sneijder, Mesut Özil, or Javier Pastore. Anyone that Mexico would consider playing in the attacking midfield spot in the center of the band of three in a 4-2-3-1 is either a modified central midfielder or a modified second striker. Vela and Dos Santos seem like the obvious candidates for that spot, but Chepo could also opt to ask Luis Ernesto Perez to step up into that position. Whatever he does, it's hardly ideal.

So, how adaptive is Chepo? Honestly, I'm not sure. He seems a bit like a "stuck in his ways" type, but it's hard to tell. Especially since he's always had Sinha at his disposal in his time at Toluca. Whether he likes it or not, either Vela or Dos Santos is going to be his best fit behind Javier Hernandez