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Soccer

What isn’t the Mexico national team scoring goals in its games leading up to the 2022 World Cup?

Mexico fans and media are concerned about recent unconvincing performances from ‘El Tri’ as pressure mounts on head coach ‘Tata’ Martino.

Update:
Henry Martin
Cristian de Marchena

With less than two months to go before Mexico make their debut at the 2022 World Cup against group rivals Poland, pressure continues to grow on ‘El Tri’ national team coach Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino as his side continue to offer disappointing displays in the games leading up up to the tournament.

‘El Tri’ lost the CONCACAF Nations League and Gold Cup finals against the United States in 2021 and struggled to secure their spot to Qatar during the World Cup qualifiers earlier this year.

As a result, only 62,729 fans, from Mexico and Peru, attended the Rose Bowl stadium last Saturday night in a venue that has a seating capacity of over 90,000 and would have normally sold out.

“We have to be improving constantly. We did play well for the first thirty minutes [against Peru] but we couldn’t keep that rhythm because in front we had a good team that could’ve easily played in the upcoming World Cup. We should keep improving but the result is positive. With the results we’ve had in the past year, we have struggled to win these type of games,” said Martino during the post-game conference.

Mexico's coach Gerardo "Tata" Martino
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Mexico's coach Gerardo "Tata" Martino ROBYN BECKAFP

Goal-shy

Mexico fans are by nature a demanding bunch, but there are now genuine fears that their side may not progress from a tricky World Cup group that features Poland, Argentina and Saudi Arabia with a failure to advance undoubtedly condemning the Argentine manager.

Scoring goals has been a problem this year with Martno not able to call-upon Mexico’s No. 9 Raul Jimenez with injury hampering the Wolves striker’s season.

Raul Jimenez of Mexico
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Raul Jimenez of MexicoRONALD MARTINEZAFP

In the calendar 2022 year, Mexico gave only bagged 13 goals in all 14 games (including friendlies) and that included three goals in the Nations League qualifier against lowly Suriname. An average of less than one goal per game is a worrying statistic that is instrumental in leading to calls for Martino to stand down. A drastic move from the FMF or Argentine coach at this late stage in the day seems unlikely but a fit Jimenez alongside Club America striker Henry Martin are essential for any hopes ‘El Tri’ will have in advance from Group C at the World Cup.

Mexico have three friendly games outstanding (Colombia, Iraq and Sweden) ahead of the Qatar World Cup and Martino will be hoping for a solid display on Tuesday night when his men face Colombia.