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Friendlies 1
Apr 20, 2023 at 3am UK
Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium

1 - 1

Ferreira (81')
Sonora (69'), Zimmerman (89'), Acosta (90+2')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Uriel (55')

Preview: USA vs. Mexico - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: USA vs. Mexico - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Thursday's friendly clash between USA and Mexico, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole

Two of the long-time powerhouse teams in CONCACAF will square off on Wednesday as the USA host Mexico at State Farm Stadium in Phoenix in what for what is being called the first annual Continental Clasico.

This match will be a dress rehearsal for each team before they face each other in the CONCACAF Nations League semi-final this June, having each topped their respective groups.

Match preview

It will be a busy few months for the Yanks, who have a chance to retain their Nations League and the Gold Cup titles later this summer.

While there is plenty of excitement surrounding what may be the best generation of the men's program in a long time, with it comes the uncertainty of who is the right person to get the best out of these players.

For the moment, that man is Anthony Hudson, and the interim boss has once again gone for youth and continuity, with all but two players chosen for this match currently featuring in the US (Major League Soccer or United Soccer League).

Hudson is only with the team to provide a little stability to a program looking to put the public scandal of Gregg Berhalter, Gio Reyna and the Reyna family behind them, while Hudson will also attempt to get these players ready for some massive international competitions later this year, while the front office continues to search for a permanent coach.

After a couple of poor showings versus Serbia and Colombia at the beginning of the year, the US have bounced back nicely, winning their final two group matches in the Nations League versus Grenada (7-1) and El Salvador (1-0) by a combined score of 8-1.

Hudson adjusted his formation in those Nations League encounters, going with a 4-2-3-1 as opposed to the 4-3-3 employed in his first two matches at the helm, and it made a massive difference in their performances, with the Yanks looking dangerous when in possession while showing plenty of attacking flair, albeit against weaker opponents and with a more veteran side than what he has for this game.

Lately, the Yanks have got the better of their Mexican rivals, unbeaten in their last four matches against them, including the previous three on American soil.

Following a disappointing showing in Qatar last winter, El Tri are going through a transitional period in the hopes of reclaiming their status as a force in CONCACAF.

The future of the team is now in the hands of Diego Cocca, who is coming off a successful spell with Atlas, leading them to their first Apertura title in Liga MX in 70 years back in 2021 and helping them claim the Clausura crown the following year.

Cocca has built up a reputation as a pragmatic manager with a defence-first style of play, relying on a midfield core that is highly coordinated, while you can expect that he will demand a lot from his wing-backs to cover plenty of ground.

Playing defensively should not be complicated for this team, who have been great at preserving results through the years, unbeaten when scoring first since a 3-2 loss at the 2021 CONCACAF Nations League final versus the United States.

In his two matches in charge of El Tri, the Mexicans have controlled the tempo of those games while maintaining much of the possession, though they have not always shown that killer instinct in the attack, taking 25 shots versus Jamaica but playing to a 2-2 draw.

Based on his player selections for this fixture, it seems like the Argentine coach is looking to build continuity with individuals who are familiar with one another, as all but one of those chosen for this window currently feature in Liga MX.

Mexico have not beaten the US since September 2019 (3-0), their longest winless run versus the Yanks since failing to triumph in six successive outings from August 2011 to April 2015.

USA friendly form:
  • W
  • D
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • D

USA form (all competitions):

Mexico friendly form:
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • W
  • L

Mexico form (all competitions):

Team News

Paul Arriola had been experiencing tightness in his right hamstring, and Cristian Roldan is entering concussion protocol with both being dropped from the American team as a precaution, while Paxton Pomykal has been added to the roster for this friendly.

Three US players will participate in their first camp with the senior team, including Caleb Wiley, Drake Callender and Joshua Wynder, with the latter being the first United Soccer League player to receive a call-up since Jonathan Gomez and Kobi Henry.

Wiley, Callender, Wynder and MLS clean sheets leader Roman Celentano are all seeking their first caps for the senior side, while Sergino Dest of AC Milan and Alan Sonora from Juarez in Liga MX are the only ones selected who feature at clubs outside of the United States.

DeAndre Yedlin and Kellyn Acosta have some fond memories of Mexico, with the Inter Miami defender setting up a Bobby Wood goal in the 2015 CONCACAF Cup final, Acosta found Miles Robinson for a goal in the 2021 Gold Cup final, while Walker Zimmerman has good memories of Arizona where he scored his second international goal in a 3-0 win over Panama in 2019.

Julian Araujo, currently on the Barcelona B team, is the only El Tri player called up for this fixture that features outside of Mexico.

Seven Mexicans will be seeking their first appearance for the senior squad on Wednesday, including Roberto de la Rosa, Aldo Rocha, Ozziel Herrera, Victor Guzman, Omar Campos, Jose Antonio Rodriguez and Luis Malagon.

Henry Martin is coming off a solid domestic campaign in Liga MX, finishing the regular season as the top goalscorer (13), while De la Rosa, Erick Sanchez, Luis Chavez and Kevin Alvarez all won the Apertura 2022 title with Pachuca.

Jesus Gallardo is the most experienced Mexican selected for this match with 82 international caps, Nestor Araujo has 64 and Carlos Rodriguez has a chance to reach 40 if he features on Wednesday.

USA possible starting lineup:
Johnson; Dest, Zimmerman, Miazga, Wiley; Gressel, Yueill, Acosta; J. Morris, Ferreira, Vazquez

Mexico possible starting lineup:
Acevedo; Araujo, Reyes, Sepulveda, Gallardo; Antuna, Chavez, Alvarado, Vega; Martin, De la Rosa

We say: USA 1-0 Mexico

There are some big games this summer for these teams, but given their rivalry, we still expect a tight, heated encounter for this midweek clash.

We may not see the best American players on the field or the bench for this match, but they have a little more international experience than those who will feature for El Tri, and that along with the psychological edge they have on them at the moment could make the difference in this encounter.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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