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La Jornada: Beating the United States can give Mexico greater confidence: Diego Cocca

▲ The Tricolor coach (left) struggles to form the team, since since it is not a FIFA date, the clubs are not obliged to cede the footballers. In the image, with his assistant Marcelo Goux.Foto FMF

Alberto Aceves

Newspaper La Jornada
Wednesday April 5, 2023, p. a10

In Mexico, the games against the United States are another way of seeing soccer. Each defeat against the neighboring country, in friendly matches or World Cup qualifiers in Concacaf, turns the illusion of a crowd of people into an affront that shows the symbolic value of this rivalry. For many years, the tricolor team supported the idea that it was the giant of the area with sporting successes. The reality now is different, especially because of the finals (Nation League 2020 and Gold Cup 2021) won by the Americans –in the stage of the Argentine Gerardo Martino– and his undefeated in the octagonal heading to Qatar 2022.

Although he is not unaware of the weight of recent history, the coach Diego Cocca transits with some restraint the days before his first friendly match against the staunch rival, agreed for April 19 at the stadium of the University of Phoenix, Arizona. Winning it can be a great confidence factor for the players, he assures regardless of the fact that it is not a FIFA date.

What happened before, is behind. I know the importance of this classic for the people of Mexico, who want to win it and motivate us to try it with the bestpoints out the Argentine with the task of compiling a list of local and MLS players given the difficulty of counting those who are active in clubs in Europe.

As it is not a FIFA date, there are teams that are not going to lend to the selected ones, but we have to find the best, Explain. Given these circumstances, Cocca analyzes the probable return of Javier Hernández, Tricolor’s historic scorer (52 goals in 109 games) and away from the concentrations since 2019, due to a case of indiscipline.

The Argentine does not guarantee that Chicharito have a secure place in the Concacaf classic; however, he acknowledges that his intention is for it to form part of this new World Cup cycle.

I have to evaluate the player not only for the characteristics he has, but for the moment he is going throughargues; I want to know how they feel, listen to them and know what process they are in. I do it with him (Hernández), as with the more than 45 players who have the possibility of being in the national team. We will decide what is best for the team.

If this sport is perseverance and work, the striker from Guadalajara is still far from his highest level. Without an official match since last October 21, his last years in the United States have been marked by injuries and extra-sports scandals. We need a mentally strong team, convinced of what they are going to do on the pitchCocca insists, trying to steer the conversation towards another, more patriotic point. Today I feel Mexican and I have the opportunity to give this country something of me from this place..

Unlike times when soccer was less important than baseball and American football, Americans see that the portrait of Mexico is no longer that of a giant when playing 11 against 11.

What has changed in recent history is the style, age and category of the players that are on our team. We are a very brave groupsummarizes the technician Anthony Hudson. Three years ago we were in a process of change, now we can assume a different role.

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