This is my prediction (right now) at Mexico’s 23 man roster for the November World Cup Qualifiers. This is based on how players are performing now and Osorio’s preferences in the past. I still expect him to make a selection or two no one saw coming but here’s my 23.
It has been a tough season for Memo at Granada but I still see him as Mexico’s #1. However, the distance between him and the other 2 isn’t large enough that I would be surprised if he were on the bench.
Carlos Salcedo has hit the ground running in Italy and has shown positional flexibility. He has played at center back, right back and even, right wing back. With Paul Aguilar hurt, Mexico does not have a clear replacement. Layun could slide over but then who starts at left back? Starting Salcedo at right back seems like a reasonable idea but Osorio might have him penciled in at center back. If that’s the route he goes, look for Jesus Duenas to slot in at RB.
-Jona Dos Santos
I think many have wanted to start these 3 in the midfield for some time but injuries and bad timing have prevented it from happening. Osorio seems reluctant to start Guardado as the lone Defensive Midfielder but El Principito holds his own in the Eredivisie and Champions League playing that role. I don’t see a reason not to try him there. Teams frustrate Mexico by bunkering down and playing for a counter attack. He alleviates Mexico’s problem of ball movement from the pivot which helps unlock those types of teams. Only Marquez has shown to be an effective distributor from that spot but I would rather start Guardado.
-Gio Dos Santos
I might be in the minority but I do not like starting both Tecatito and Lozano. They play similar styles. When struggling, Mexico tends to kick it to one of them on the wings and hope they create magic. Starting only one of them also gives Mexico an attacking spark off the bench. A tired defense in the latter part of the game will not want to face a fresh Tecatito/Lozano coming off the bench. Gio starting in Columbus might have seemed like a dream a few months ago but his form with the Galaxy and recent stint with El Tri show he still has what it takes to play in meaningful games for Mexico.
Who did I forget? Where did I go wrong? Let me know in the comments.