2018 Copa Mundial Team Preview – México

As I type this,  México is playing Scotland in a friendly match in the Despedida for El Tri. The French would call it the Au Revoir or Bon Voyage game.  It has become tradition to play a last friendly before the World Cup at home to wish the players good luck.  This has been going on for the last seven World Cups, including this one. Yes, that means México is one of only six countries to be in every World Cup since 1994. Only Brazil, Germany, and México have also qualified from the Group Stage to the Knockout Stage in every World Cup since 1994.

Unfortunately,  México also has another World Cup tradition: Losing in the first knockout game in every World Cup since 1994. It’s actually quite extraordinary.

But let’s begin at the beginning.

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In México, fútbol has been played since the end of the 19th century.  C.F. Pachuca, the oldest club in México, was founded in 1901 by Cornish miners that brought the game from England and an unfortunate love of monarchy.  Wait, the English?!?

Yes, the English.  México has had influence from many European countries besides Spain.  You may know a little holiday known as Cinco De Mayo?

It actually commemorates the Mexican victory over the French in the Battle of Puebla in 1862. True to Mexican form, it’s rarely noted that the reason the French showed up in the first place is that the Mexican government decided not to pay its debts to French, British, and Spanish creditors. Mexicans eventually lost that war and were, for a brief period, ruled by an Austrian monarch (Maximillian) installed by France in an effort to affect European power dynamics.  This was aided, of course, by Mexicans looking to establish a monarchy in México (Thanks Britain!).

Yes, my birthplace is a land of many contradictions.

It is not coincidental that Mexico City’s main street, the Paseo De La Reforma,

is modelled after Paris’ Champs Élysées

You can see it in the trees planted along the edge and an additional road on the side to accommodate turning traffic.

There is also German/Austrian influence in México thanks to the above-mentioned war and occupation.  You may have tasted it in the beers

or heard it in the music.

Why do you think the norteña music of Northern México sounds so much like Bavarian Oompah music?

And, obviously, Spanish influence for obvious reasons.

***

The Mexican National Team has a history as rich in contradictions as the country it represents.  It is, and has been for decades, the best team north of Brazil in the Americas. It has also achieved success, being one of only 8 countries that have won two of the big three national team fútbol tournaments, the World Cup, The Confederations Cup, and the Summer Olympics.

At the same time, it has, outside of World Cups it hosted, never advanced past the first elimination game.  Let’s take a look at the Tale of The Tape:

World Cup Eliminated In Final Position Matches Played Wins Draws Losses Goals Favor Goals Against
Uruguay 30 Group 13 3 0 0 3 4 13
Brazil 50 Group 12 3 0 0 3 2 10
Switzerland 54 Group 13 2 0 0 2 2 8
Sweden 58 Group 16 3 0 1 2 1 8
Chile 62 Group 11 3 1 0 2 3 4
England 66 Group 12 3 0 2 1 1 3
México 70 Quarterfinals 6 4 2 1 1 6 4
Argentina 78 Group 16 3 0 0 3 2 12
México 86 Quarterfinals 6 5 3 2 0 6 2
USA 94 Round of 16 13 4 1 2 1 4 4
France 98 Round of 16 13 4 1 2 1 8 7
Korea/Japan 02 Round of 16 11 4 2 1 1 4 4
Germany 06 Round of 16 15 4 1 1 2 5 5
South Africa 10 Round of 16 14 4 1 1 2 4 5
Brazil 14 Round of 16 10 4 2 1 1 5 3

Current FIFA Rank: 15

Current ELO Rank: 16

So, as Mark Sanchez can attest, Mexicans feel comfortable in the teens.

***

Schedule

17 JUN 2018 – 18:00 Local time, 08:00 Pacific, Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow

GERMANY v MÉXICO

23 JUN 2018 – 18:00 Local time, 08:00 Pacific, Rostov Arena, Rostov-On-Don

SOUTH KOREA v MÉXICO

27 JUN 2018 – 19:00 Local time, 07:00 Pacific, Ekaterinburg Arena, Ekatering

MÉXICO v SWEDEN

***

Prognosis

The first game is the most difficult with a tie being the best realistic case scenario.  The other two games come out to wins as the best cases, ties as the most realistic, and losses as the worst. Ze Germans just lost a friendly against Austria, of all teams, and haven’t exactly set the world on fire in the lead-up to the World Cup having tied England 0-0, France 2-2, Spain 1-1, and lost to Brazil 1-0 and today Austria 2-1.  They’ll probably destroy Saudi Arabia in their last friendly, but a tie in the opening game is likely.

Traditionally, the Germans start slow anyway and react, so this bodes well as South Korea and Sweden will likely feel the wrath after an initial tie.  The group qualification, then, will depend on what México can do against those two.

***

Predicción

I say the Mexicans tie Germany in the first game and then beat the Koreans and tie the Swedes.  That likely takes them to second place in the group and a date with Brazil.  So, a likely 7th straight exit in the Round of 16.

But wait a minute!  There is something else to consider.

There is a strange triangle in fútbol in the Americas between México, Brazil, and Argentina:

Brazil usually beats Argentina.  Argentina usually beats México.  México has, in the last two decades, found success playing against Brazil.

México beat Brazil in the 2012 Summer Olympics for the Gold Medal.

They also beat Brazil in 1999 for the Confederations Cup.

In the last World Cup, Brazil were drawn in the same group as México.  They tied their group game and finished tied on points. Goal difference gave Brazil the top spot.

All this is to say that México will not be intimidated should they match up with Brazil in the Round of 16.  Don’t be surprised if they pull off the upset (sees King Hippo taking notes).

***

Vital Statistics

Miss México World 2018 (to represent México in Miss World):

Vanessa Ponce de León

You know what?  Just watch this:

National Dish:

The cuisine of México is as rich and varied as any in the world.  There are many regional specialties and specific dishes famous in certain regions.  However, I will settle for one, which is, to be fair, the dish that everyone associates with México:  The taco.

Please note that these look nothing like the tacos known and served in the US.  I’m going to pull an Archer here

Yes, the margarita was invented in México

and say that a true Mexican taco only has five ingredients:

1- Two small corn tortillas (never flour)

2- Meat

3- Cilantro

4- Freshly chopped onion

5- Salsa

That’s it.  As you see in the picture above, lemon and radishes are typically supplied with an order of tacos to cut the spice in the salsa and to add a bit of optional flavour in your mouth.

And the tacos are best served in these types of places:

Right on the street.

In conclusion, Nigeria México is a land of contrasts. Thank you.

***

Editor’s Note: We have a World Cup Pool!! Please click the link below to sign up:

https://www.pooltracker.com/join.asp?poolid=149105

The pool password is “Balls”

As always,  there will be a fabulous prize given to the winner.  Join today!!

ballsofsteelandfury

ballsofsteelandfury

International Member of the Geelong Cats and recovering Steelers fan. Likes Butts. And Balls. And Boobs. Pretty much anything that starts with the letter B. Preferably together.
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Don T

Uy, lotta great stuff here! Hadn’t thought about El Tri’s recent record against Brazil. Can’t stand Rafa Márquez, but LOVE the coach.
Also,
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Wakezilla

“Mexicans eventually lost that war and were, for a brief period, ruled by Maximillian…..”

Sounds like that gave Mexico time for some Sexual healing.

Authentic tacos are incredible….once I remove the Cilantro, which tastes like soap to me.

I’m legitimately shocked Mexico made it to the round of 16 every World Cup since 94. They had some uneventful performances at World Cups to the point I would have guessed they only made it to the knockout stage at best, three or four times.

Don T

Just ask that the cilantro be “extra stems” #ProblemSolved

King Hippo

TRUE STORY! I have never been to Mexico. I have gotten the shits intensely quite enough right here, thanks…

theeWeeBabySeamus

FOR SALE: One set of “slightly” used Titleist golf clubs*. Just re-gripped with new Black Widow cord grips. Includes Titleist golf bag, golf shoes, golf balls and anything else which might ever tempt current owner to set foot on a fucking golf course ever again.

*After today, some clubs might be more than “slightly” used. Some may or may not even be “slightly” broken. 8 iron may or may not be at the bottom of a lake after current owner failed to shoot his age today. For nine holes. Holy shit.

tl:dr : Fuck golf, I quit.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to get drunker ‘n hayul before the Caps blow this Stanley Cup later tonight.

Rikki-Tikki-Deadly

You probably won’t think this is funny but I wish you’d posted this about two weeks ago cause my brother’s clubs got stolen and he had to buy new ones.

theeWeeBabySeamus

FWIW, I didn’t really break or drown any clubs, though it was tempting. But today was very frustrating. Pain in left shoulder/arm and numbness in left hand just won’t let me do it anymore.

I think I really am done with it.

litre_cola

Just don’t keep score. I used to be high seventies low eighties for 15 years and then didn’t play as much. I don’t keep score anymore because it would ruin a nice day out.

theeWeeBabySeamus

I used to be high seventies low eighties

Ditto. And even since this left arm thing popped up a coupla years ago, I still occasionally approach that. Sort of.

But today was a new low. If I can’t break 100 and it hurts the whole way thru the round, then what’s the point?

Game Time Decision
Game Time Decision

I rarely golf, but keep score by the number of balls i lose or find. try to keep it in the -5 to -10 range. I’m out to enjoy the day and the company i’m with.
/ swing. Fuck, that one’s gone
//next swing, that one too
/// next swing, yay in a sand trap
////drink

Rikki-Tikki-Deadly

That would be a great approach for me but these days I live near a golf course so balls are too plentiful and it would encourage bad habits (sure, I can carry the water…)

Also, la-dee-da, look at Mr. Fancypants here who has “friends” he can “do things with”.

Game Time Decision
Game Time Decision

hahaha, they are only there if i’m buying drinks. and i’m not mr moneybags either

litre_cola

Yeah the pain is the part that sucks. I have been very tentative with my back due to that reason.

Rikki-Tikki-Deadly

But today was very frustrating. Pain in left shoulder/arm and numbness in left hand just won’t let me do it anymore.

I think I really am done with it.

You say that every time you start dating someone…wait, what were we walking about again?

theeWeeBabySeamus

LOL. Ohhhhh, you!!!!
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Game Time Decision
Game Time Decision

what size shoes?
/asking for a friend

theeWeeBabySeamus

11

Senor Weaselo

They’re not lefty clubs that I will never use by any chance, right?

/Considers “For sale: Baby shoes, never worn” joke.
//Nah…

theeWeeBabySeamus

LMFAO

Rikki-Tikki-Deadly

The closest I ever got to sealing the deal (read: not close) with a Mexican woman (and not a Mexican-American woman) was getting the phone number of a very cute one at a rooftop party in Venice Beach that one of my coworkers had invited me to. I was never able to arrange an actual date with her and after two or three unreturned phone calls I gave up.

Rikki-Tikki-Deadly

So, as Mark Sanchez can attest, Mexicans feel comfortable in the teens.

This is great.

Brick Meathook
Brick Meathook

Everyone’s favorite Mexican:
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Horatio Cornblower

My Mexican Presidente will always be Ron Mexico, thankyouverymuch!

Game Time Decision
Game Time Decision

so, i’m expecting that from all these write ups, that there will be a DFO Mr and or Ms world cup bracket from the purdy peeps used in all the write ups, right?

Senor Weaselo

Mr. World Cup is Rikki, haven’t you been reading the stories?

scotchnaut

Sheryl Crow is my fave A cup celeb!

scotchnaut

My second favourite? Bobby Lee.

scotchnaut

Look here!