Mexico vs Jamaica, Uruguay Eliminated, sets up a great match up at the Rosebowl

Mexico entered the Copa America Centenario Group C match with the news that Uruguay had been eliminated by Venezuela in the previous Group C match up. Jamaica cognizant that today, they had to win today in Mexico vs Jamaica at the Rose bowl in Pasadena, in order to have any chance to qualify to the quarterfinals. This proved to brew the perfect storm for an exciting back and forth match up that had rapid changing high’s and low’s during the entire match before a sold out Rose bowl in Pasadena.

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Mexico started with the same line up from its previous match vs Uruguay, except Jesus Dueñas was in for the suspended Guardado, and Juan Carlos Osorio opted to field Yasser Corona for Diego Reyes and Raul Jimenez for Javier Aquino. Chicharito +10 + the 12th Player were ready to take on the Jamaican team and qualify for the quarterfinals of Copa American Centenario.

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Mexico kicked off a match that will be remembered for the player rotation and at times a shaky defense. Mexico will score thanks to Chicharito scoring his 45th goal for the Mexican national team at the 18th Minute with a fantastic Header. Mexico stayed on the attack and kept pushing up with their 4-3-3 formation to the Jamaican goal guarded by the Andre Blake.

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Courtesy of Ivan Fernandez 

Mexico maintained possession but was hampered by occasional turnovers by the defense. This emboldened Jamaica to play for the counterattack. That is when Yasser Corona stepped up and became the hero of the night, by saving the Mexican goal, and a combination of Ochoa’s trademark spectacular performances.

In the second half, Juan Carlos Osorio decided to change some inequities in the field and substituted Tecatito Corona for el Chuky Lozano. The key change that gave more balance in the midfield to Mexico, happened when Jesus Dueñas came off to give way for Jesus Molina. Eventually Chicharito came off and El Hermoso Peralta came on, which was a masterful key move by Juan Carlos Osorio, since Peralta scored and sealed the result for Mexico in the 81st minute. At that moment, it was checkmate. Jamaica says good bye to the Copa America Centenario with one match left to play.

Regardless of all the nitpicking on the defense that kept Jamaica with a clean score sheet, the 83,263 fans were treated to a fantastic night of back and forth Futbol, that will linger in their collective memories till the end of their times.

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Nestor Araujo gave us a small brief rundown on how the defense performed vs Jamaica, and he was kind enough to to answer a few questions about the match in the mix zone.

And Miguel Layun tells us what he thinks about him playing in a different position that he is used to

Copa America draw: Mex and US National team overview

copaAmericaCentThe Copa America draw took place and groups are ready and in place. Mexico is in group C with Uruguay, Venezuela and Jamaica. Chilean coach Noel Sanvicente, stated Mexico can be considered a favorite. Of course he also praised his team as one not to be underestimated. Psychological warfare may be taking place here, when calling Mexico a favorite. Not that they are in a group of death or anything, but this is a South American tournament including the likes of Brazil, Argentina and Chile. One of the El Tri opponents, Jamaica, is a CONCACAF team that is beatable, Venezuela is not usually a top South American team. Uruguay will be the biggest challenge in the group, on paper.

We know that Mexico plays better when they are considered the underdog or are forced to elevate their play to take on giants like Brazil or Argentina. We have also seen Mexico struggle vs CONCACAF teams that they were supposed to handle without major problems. This tournament is an excellent opportunity for Mexico to shine and show their worth versus the powers of CONMEBOL. Also any type of beating given to Uruguay is a good thing.

The US National Team is also in this tournament. It will take place in the US after all. So Mexico and the US will essentially be the home teams. The USMNT are in group A with Colombia, Costa Rica and Paraguay. We have seen many “Molero” games with the US and Mexico vs Paraguay, so many would see them as a beatable opponent. Costa Rica has been a top team in CONCACAF, and could pose a challenge for the US. Especially at a time where it may be thought that the US is at a low level of play recently. Consider the US already losing the CONCACAF cup as well as the Gold Cup prior, not even making it to the final. Is this the worst US team to be put together for a long time? Also is this Copa America the toughest tournament the US will participate in since the World Cup? Not a good time for the US to come in at a low level of play.

There is always the fighting spirit that the US can rely on. The underdog grit. The “dig deep” attitude that could lift the US up to Copa America glory. On the other hand, I have seen many US adversaries say the US will go “3 and out”, or even chant “I believe that they will lose!”. It should be an exciting tournament.