USA vs Mexico is one of the best rivalries in international soccer. Over the last year, the USA has beaten Mexico three times. They are closing in on a record should they win again this coming Thursday night. This match isn’t just another match. The USMNT and Mexico meet in the first of the final three qualifiers to make it to the World Cup. Both nations sit on 21 points. They’re fighting for second place with one another; one wants revenge, the other wants to make history.
USA vs Mexico
The USA is looking to win its fourth fourth-straight win over Mexico. This would be a record-long winning streak for the USMNT. Mexico will be looking to stop this streak with a full-strength squad. The stage is set at the Estadio Azteca, Mexico’s historic cathedral for the beautiful game. Will there be a team that comes out on top in this one?
Mexico looking to get revenge
Mexico is sitting in third place in the octagonal standings with three games to play. The oftentimes arrogant team has been humbled quite a bit in this past calendar year. Mexico lost to the USA three times in 2021, twice in finals (Concacaf Nations League, Concacaf Gold Cup.) They also lost to Canada in a match that all but solidified Canada’s spot at the top of the table. Can this full-strength Mexico side get revenge?
USA vs Mexico is always a fun match and one that Mexico brings a little extra intercity to. Coming into this match, I’m sure that this Mexico team believes they can get revenge. However, the Mexican media is not as confident. Many reporters are saying that this Mexico team plays not to lose, rather than playing to win. This is tied to why the USA has won the last three matches against Mexico. Will this style of play show against the USMNT and prevent Mexico from getting revenge?
A confident USMNT
The USMNT is entering a crucial time. We are going to see what this team really is with huge expectations placed upon a relatively inexperienced squad. This young team is tasked with qualifying for the 2022 World Cup and expunging the failure of the team that failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. With the weight of these expectations, this USMNT is still confident in what it can do!
Captain Tyler Adams spoke to the media ahead of the USA vs Mexico match, and stated: “We have to qualify, there’s just no other option.” This speaks to the team’s mentality heading into the match against Mexico. Many wanted the USMNT to save some of their top players for the second match in this grouping of three; a home match against Panama. With the USA needing five points from three matches to mathematically clinch a spot in the World Cup, fans want the team to prioritize more “winnable games.” This is not going to happen.
The team is preaching the importance of competing in every match, even what could be seen as the toughest game down at the Azteca. They’re competing for the fans, to show them that they belong with the world’s best game in and game out. That’s a confident mentality and could take this team far if the mentality translates to the tactics on the field. We’ll see if this is the case tonight in USA vs Mexico.
Two teams fighting for second place
Both the USA and Mexico are fighting for second place behind a Canada side that is far above in the octagonal standings. The final three qualifiers begin tonight for all these Concacaf nations. Whether the USA finds a way to win their record-breaking fourth straight, or Mexico gets revenge, both teams will not be able to catch Canada. It’s a humbling moment honestly.
For so long Mexico and the USA have been clawing at each other, while other Concacaf Nations have been improving. Canada’s rise, Panama’s relentless play, and even Costa Rica’s never-say-die attitude are making this federation very well rounded. While it will likely be USA and Mexico finishing in the auto-qualifying spots with Canada, the rest of Concacaf is continuously improving.
Tonight, USA vs Mexico! The two renew their rivalry tonight at 10:00 pm! Catch the match on Univision, TUDN, CBS Sports Network, or Paramount +. This has the makings of another instant classic like the last few USA-Mexico ties. Don’t miss the intensity, and passion in what will be a very important match for both nations.
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Mandatory Credit: Robin Alam/Icon Sportswire