THE SANTA CLARA
October 24, 2013
The Mexican National Team has only won two of its 10 FIFA World Cup Qualifying matches, was eliminated in the group stage at the Confederations Cup and was wiped out of the Gold Cup in the semifinals.
“We’ve touched rock bottom,” said Justino Compean, President of the Mexican Soccer Federation.
Mexico finished fourth in its regional World Cup Qualifying table, which puts them on the brink of missing the World Cup next summer.
Mexico, however, still has a slight chance to win a World Cup ticket if they beat New Zealand in a two-legged series — one game at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City and the other in Wellington, New Zealand.
These drastic times have called for drastic measures. In attempts to put an end to the poor performance, the Mexican Federation fired head coach Jose Manuel de la Torre and has now had four different interim coaches in the short span of about one month.
Luis Fernando Tena, de la Torre’s assistant, took the reigns of the National Team following the firing. He, however, was only able to maintain his position for one game. After Tena came Victor Manuel Vucetich, who held the head-coaching job for two games.
Seeing him as the man fit for this difficult task, Mexico appointed Miguel Herrera to the head coach position this past Friday.
Herrera is the current head coach of Club America, a professional Mexican soccer team. He led the team to a league title last year and his team currently sits atop the league table.
He is not the permanent solution for the Mexican team and would rather serve as an interim head coach. This means that Mexico may have to find yet another coach in the future.
The Mexican team undoubtedly needs to get its act together quickly if they want to qualify for the World Cup. A question to consider is why would Mexico want a spot in the World Cup with the way the team is playing? If they are unable to compete regionally, then what makes them think they can compete at an international level?
The players are not fully to blame, although they have a stake in the crisis. With so many different head coaches over the past month, it is evident that they are not the problem either.
The main individuals to blame are the directors of the Mexican Federation because they are unable to maintain a consistent coaching cycle. They are easily influenced by big television corporations, such as Televisa, to take certain mandated actions -— one of them being who to elect as head coach.
Although the Mexican team is in freefall, Herrera reassured fans that the team will earn a World Cup ticket.
Ivan Munoz is a junior political science and English double major.