Mexico’s Gold Cup beneath Jaime ‘Jimmy’ Lozano begins quick


Nimble and thrilling when driving ahead, Mexico‘s males’s nationwide group moved like a LamborJimmy of their 4-0 opening win over Honduras within the Gold Cup on Sunday. Underneath the management of interim supervisor Jaime “Jimmy” Lozano, El Tri appeared completely rejuvenated after stumbling earlier this month to a regarding spot at third within the Concacaf Nations League. Enjoying cautious soccer beneath former coach Diego Cocca, Mexico struggled in a discouraging 3-0 semifinal loss to the United States and a slender 1-0 victory over Panama within the third place match.

However on Sunday at NRG Stadium in Houston, issues considerably modified in Lozano’s debut match. “This…looks as if one thing magical,” mentioned Lozano about his group’s rapid enhancements. “It looks as if every part can flip round in three days.”

So what precisely modified?

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Apart from seemingly eager to win over the brand new chief on the sideline, Mexico’s gamers had been extra comfy in an attack-minded method from Lozano. In a 4-3-3 setup that centered on overlapping runs on the flanks and a freedom for midfielders to roam, Mexico had been dynamic as they progressed the ball, commonly creating harmful possibilities as they threw numbers ahead into the ultimate third.

It is considerably exceptional when you think about that the group solely had 4 days to coach after Lozano stepped in, however contemplating his previous expertise with a powerful core of gamers, it is maybe not that stunning that Mexico had been in a position to thrive from the get-go within the Gold Cup.

Within the beginning XI towards Honduras, a complete of six gamers (Henry Martin, Uriel Antuna, Luis Romo, Johan Vasquez, Jorge Sanchez and Guillermo Ochoa) had been coached by Lozano in Mexico’s run to a noteworthy bronze medal on the 2020 Olympics. That quantity will increase to 9 while you embrace others like Roberto Alvarado, Cesar Montes and Carlos Rodriguez, who had been additionally on the Olympics and on this present Gold Cup roster.

In an analogous method that Mexico cleverly counter-pressed, pushed gamers forward and located fixed passing connections within the final Olympic video games, the identical might be mentioned of the senior group within the 4-0 victory over the weekend.

“It is a model of play that everybody on this call-up can carry out to perfection,” mentioned Lozano after the end result. If something, Sunday’s recreation was extra of a testomony about how Cocca’s ways, earlier than he was fired final Monday, did not fall in step with what Mexican soccer ought to be striving for.

Making a reputation for himself on the membership stage with Atlas via Liga MX championships within the 2021 Apertura and 2022 Clausura, Cocca took a mid-table group from Guadalajara and made them a win-by-any-means squad. They had been defensively strong. They did not take dangers. They, as seen with Cocca via Mexico, prioritized inserting numbers again.

Due to this, followers justifiably puzzled if that was the proper tactical method for a gaggle of Mexican gamers that had been trying to regain their standing as giants in Concacaf. In a area stuffed much less gifted squads, hiring a defense-oriented coach was an odd determination by the Mexican Soccer Federation (FMF).

And even in that semifinal Nations League loss towards their U.S. rivals, that defensive-led setup failed in spectacular style. After giving the U.S. males’s nationwide group an excessive amount of respect and area to run, Mexico had been the worthy losers in a defeat that might have simply had extra objectives from the opposition.

“A recreation towards america could be misplaced, there’s at all times that danger as a result of that is soccer and the win can go by hook or by crook. What can’t be accepted was the way in which by which it occurred,” mentioned FMF commissioner Juan Carlos Rodriguez final Monday after Cocca’s firing.

Versus a extra inflexible method from Cocca, Lozano lets his midfielders roam and be extra concerned in alternatives within the remaining third. Romo specifically, was a primary instance of the advantages of the brand new system. Lower than a minute into the sport towards Honduras, Romo sprinted forward and located an opportunity to place Mexico up 1-0 after selecting up a clearance and capitalizing on a chance close to the surface of the 18-yard field.

Romo would then put his squad up 2-0 within the twenty third minute following a redirected header from Jesus Gallardo off a nook. Always harmful in assault, El Tri would then discover second half objectives from Oberlin Pineda and midfielder Luis Chavez.

“[I’m] very comfortable, as a result of the group deserved a efficiency like this,” mentioned Romo to TUDN after the match. “Starting with a quick begin and benefit, I believe it is motivating.”

All that mentioned, this was only one single recreation.

Whereas it is simple to get misplaced within the pleasure of the end result, the hyperbole of the LamborJimmy nickname, and the introduced crowd of greater than 66,000, Mexico’s opponents did not precisely do a lot to check them. Honduras lacked concepts going ahead, typically resorting to giving the ball to captain Alberth Elis and hoping one thing would emerge. In transition, they could not maintain tempo with El Tri‘s attacking gamers who created a complete of 13 pictures within the field.

Though Lozano said that he “fulfilled a dream of teaching Mexico’s senior group,” he remained level-headed concerning the present state of his roster. “Not every part has been fastened as a result of we received 4-0 immediately, nor do I believe that every part has been a catastrophe as a result of issues did not work out within the World Cup they usually did not work out within the Nations League,” mentioned the supervisor.

He can proceed fixing issues, although.

In what was extra of a take a look at drive on Sunday, Lozano could have a chance quickly to spotlight if he is able to taking the sharp turns and pacey straightaways of the Gold Cup circuit. Respectable assessments lie forward with a recreation towards Haiti on Thursday and event invitees Qatar on Sunday — though Mexico ought to be favored to win these and prime the group.

If achieved, we might then begin speaking concerning the mild-mannered Lozano as a real long-term choice, however first, he’ll have to efficiently maneuver his approach via the group stage.


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