South American Football - Mexico prepare to try and avoid World Cup humiliation

Having backed coach Jose Manuel "Chepo" de la Torre, struggling Mexico need to show improvement in next month's make-or-break World Cup qualifiers or they risk missing out on the 2014 finals in Brazil.

Reuters
World Cup - Mexico prepare to try and avoid World Cup humiliation
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Toluca coach Jose Manuel de la Torre

Favourites Mexico, fifth in the six-nation final CONCACAF group with a paltry three points from three matches, have named a 23-man squad for qualifiers against Jamaica, Panama and Costa Rica between June 4 and 11 and the Confederations Cup.

Only the top three in the World Cup qualifying group go through with the fourth-placed team playing off against Oceania winners New Zealand for another berth.

Despite their critical position, the Mexican Football Federation (FMF) made a point of confirming de la Torre in his post last week until the World Cup finals.

FMF president Justino Compean said: "Obviously we're not at ease with three points out of nine but we're with Chepo to the death."

Panama lead the group on five points with Costa Rica, United States and Honduras a point behind. Mexico have been held to 0-0 draws at home by Jamaica and the U.S. and 2-2 away to Honduras.

De la Torre said an extra group of players would prepare for the CONCACAF Gold Cup and he would merge them with some of the players from the present squad for the tournament in the United States in July.

Mexico travel to Brazil for the June 15-30 Confederations Cup in Brazil as Gold Cup holders and will play in Group A with the host nation, Japan and Italy. Group B is made up of world champions Spain, Uruguay, Tahiti and Nigeria.

The squad, which includes six European-based players, play a friendly against Nigeria in Houston on May 31.

Squad:

Goalkeepers - Jesus Corona (Cruz Azul), Alfredo Talavera (Toluca), Guillermo Ochoa (Ajaccio)

Defenders: Francisco Rodriguez, Diego Reyes (both America), Hiram Mier, Severo Meza (both Monterrey), Jorge Torres Nilo (Tigres UANL), Hector Moreno (Espanyol)

Midfielders: Gerardo Torrado, Pablo Barrera (both Cruz Azul), Jesus Molina (America), Jesus Zavala (Monterrey), Hector Herrera, Angel Reyna (both Pachuca), Carlos Salcido (Tigres UANL), Andres Guardado (Valencia), Javier Aquino (Villarreal)

Forwards: Giovani Dos Santos (Real Mallorca), Raul Jimenez (America), Aldo de Nigris (Monterrey), Oribe Peralta (Santos Laguna), Javier Hernandez (Manchester United)

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