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MEXICO

When will Julián Quiñones play his first game for Mexico?

Jaime Lozano called up the Colombian-born forward for the first time and he is set to feature for El Tri in the Concacaf Nations League fixtures.

Update:
Julián Quiñones prepares for Mexico debut
Jose Luis Melgarejo

Mexico have a new addition to the roster for the November international break, Club América winger Julián Quiñones.

The 26-year-old has impressed in Liga MX for Tigres UANL and Atlas before joining the Mexico City side, and is now set to make his first appearance for El Tri.

Quiñones was born in Colombia and represented the national side at Under-20 level. However having not made an appearance for the full team he was free to complete the naturalization process for Mexico, where he has lived since 2016.

The exciting winger will be a useful edition to Jaime Lozano’s squad as Mexico take on Honduras in a two-legged Concacaf Nations League quarter-final. Mexico will first travel to Estacio Nacional Chelato Ucles on Friday 17 November, before hosting Honduras at Estadio Azteca on Tuesday 21 November.

Lozano delighted to welcome Quiñones to Mexico roster

Quiñones joins a Mexico team high on confidence after enjoying a remarkable turnaround under Lozano. Previously coach Diego Cocca was dismissed just months into his reign and Lozano stepped in, initially on an interim basis.

However Lozano delivered a Gold Cup triumph in July and, after being given the job on a permanent basis, followed that up with strong performances in recent international friendly. Last month Mexico cruised to a 2-0 win over Ghana and secured an impressive 2-2 draw with Germany.

Mexico drew with Germany in the October internationals.
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Mexico drew with Germany in the October internationals.BASTIAAN SLABBERSEFE

Speaking recently, Lozano said that he was delighted to be able to welcome Quiñones into the national team.

“Julián is Mexican. We already talked to him, he feels Mexican,” he said. “He wants to play for Mexico, he identifies with the life opportunity he has received.”

Mexican Football Federation rejects Quiñones debate

News of Quiñones’ switch was criticised in some quarters, but the Mexico Football Federation issued a strongly-worded statement on the matter.

It read: “Any player with Mexican nationality, the soccer skills and the desire to represent Mexico may be considered for our National Teams.”

There are no ‘first-class Mexicans’, nor ‘second-class Mexicans’. We are all Mexicans. As an institution, we want to conclude the debate around naturalized soccer players.”