Mexico survives Jamaica in Second Match of Group Stage of Copa America
Jamaica came out with their emotions on their chests and brought a physical and tense match to Mexico. My end of regulation time reaction was that Jamaica only needed a little bit of luck and maybe the tables would have turned. Luckily for us we had Memo Ochoa firing on all cylinders to stop some point blank shots as well as a long range missiles.
Don’t misinterpret my post as I’m happy Mexico won, but I still feel they didn’t showcase dominance and complete control of the match through their possession and/or strategy. And unfortunately for Mexican fans its something they have yet to showcase under Juan Carlos Osorio, especially in this tournament.
It feels like the Mexican team is always in a rush to score and to win the ariel game. So many balls are lifted only to see the pass ultimately wasted as a good percentage of the time the other team over powers our midfielders and forwards. This was the case in the friendly against Chile and in both the Uruguay and Jamaica group stage matches for the Copa America.
And please don’t get me wrong, we are great at scoring from the air, but it does require some ball movement to get the other team out of position and free up our attack. (look at the image above, both defenders are getting beautiful views of the goal) What frustrates me the most is when we do it, we do it well, yet we get distracted and move away from this strategy. (even when were winning) It reminds me of recess in elementary school. The teacher had us in check for most of the class, but once we were excused to go outside, we went into chaos mode. Seems like for the first 15 minutes Mexico is in class and once they score or get frustrated they go to recess. I think this is something the coaching staff needs to address as it will help them have focus and strategy. We have talented players and if we don’t stick to a plan and execute the basics we are never going to excel for 90 minutes and beat the high powered teams.
As Mexico enters the knockout stage in the Copa America tournament, we will clearly see teams from the likes of Argentina, Chile, Brazil and Colombia take advantage of the chaos and pin Mexico into a corner as soon as they can. Then its either sink or swim for whatever time remains. And we all remember the Round of 16’s for the last several World Cups.