Posted on December 25, 2011
As talented as this generation of Mexican players are, another quality group of player is preparing to succeed the 2011 edition of El Tri.
Take, for example, what transpired this summer.
Not only did the Mexicans win the FIFA Under-17 World Cup, they finished third in the U-20 world championship.
Not too shabby and very scary for their CONCACAF competition.
On July 10, for the second time in six years, Mexico has captured the U-17 World Cup. El Tri scored a goal in each half to register a 2-0 victory over Uruguay at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City.
“This is an amazing feeling and one of my absolute greatest sporting moments here in Mexico,” Mexican coach Raul Gutierrez said.
Antonio Briseno headed headed in a left-wing cross from Carlos Fierro in the 31st minute. Giovani Casillas added an insurance tally, off a two-on-one break with Arturo Gonzalez two minutes into added time before a boisterous capacity crowd of 98,943.
“We have a strong group of players in this Mexican team,” Gutierrez said. “They behave well off the pitch and play with great spirit and technique when the whistle blows. They did absolutely everything I asked of them through the whole tournament and I couldn’t be more proud of them.
“We had a very tough semifinal game and we came through it to reach the final. We felt no pressure today, but we felt the love of the fans and it helped us to play the ball on the ground and play the kind of football that we like. I love this job and I love this team. This is a great day.”
Goalkeeper Richard Sanchez, a member of FC Dallas (Major League Soccer) recorded the shutout, although he had some help as Elbio Alvarez (35th minute) and Juan San Martin (62nd minute) hit the woodwork.
The 2005 El Tri side included such future Mexican internationals as defenders Efrain Juarez and Hector Moreno, midfielder-forward Giovani dos Santos and forward Carlos Vela.
Some 41 days later in Bogota, Columbia, , Mexican National Teams completed a memorable summer by finishing third at the U-20 World Cup. Mexico recorded a 3-1 win over France in the third-place match.
El Tri started off the summer by capturing the CONCACAF Gold Cup crown in June.
Ulises Davila, Jorge Enriquez and Edson Rivera scored after Alexandre Lacazette had put France ahead with an eighth-minute header.
It turned out to be the Mexicans’ second best showing at a U-20 tournament. They finished second in 1977.
“We are very proud to have finished third,” Mexico coach Juan Carlos Chavez said. “We had tough opponents, but we had enough talent and personality to win this game.
“This result is a reward for the good work done in Mexico, by the federations and all the clubs. We can see the results in the U-17s, the U-20s and the national team. My players have been in contact during the whole tournament with the national coach [Jose Manuel] de La Torre, and hopefully some of them will keep on improving and work with him in the national team. These young players are good footballers and good boys. They are an example for Mexican youth.”
Four minutes after Lacazette lifted the French into the lead, Davila equalized. He took a pass from Enriquez, Davila launched a 20-yard shot that skipped off the wet field and through the legs of goalkeeper Jonathan Ligali
The French continued to dominated, but El Tri took the lead in the 49th minute as Enriquez scored on a header. Rivera gave the Mexicans some breathing room in the 71st minute.
The Mexican men will try to add to their spoils at the women’s and men’s Olympic qualifying in January and March, respectively.
Categories: Mexico, North America, Youth
Tags: Antonio Briseno, Edson Rivera, FC Dallas, FIFA Under-17 World Cup, FIFA Under-20 World Cup, Giovani Casillas, Jorge Enriquez, Juan Carlos Chavez, Major League Soccer, Raul Gutierrez, Richard Sanchez, Ulises Davila