Mexico’s first game of 2018 finished on Wednesday night, and the guys in green walked away with a 1-0 win over Bosnia. Although they got the win, there was not a lot of enjoyment from this night. Juan Carlos Osorio seems to be sending mixed signals on what he wants, compared to what he does as a manager.
The first half was an absolute snoozefest, as there was very little done on the field against this C, if not D-rate Bosnia squad. Yet, instead of going over the entire game by its best moments, let’s break down the player’s action with ratings…
- R. Cota, 6: The keeper was not threatened very often in this match.
- H. Ayala, 6: I have to give him a boost for the goal, however, the overall match was mediocre from the centreback.
- O. Alanís, 4: The fact he isn’t getting minutes for his club should’ve been a sign to not start him, yet, Osorio did, and it wasn’t a good idea.
- J. Molina, 5: The same old thing from Molina. Nothing special, nothing horrible.
- L. Rodríguez, 5: If this was his opportunity to shine for a chance to win a spot to Russia, he surely didn’t impress. This was the theme for several other players, as well.
- J. Gallardo, 5: Although he had some exciting moments attacking, nothing really stuck. He had an opportunity to find Martín wide open and couldn’t pull it off.
- O. Pineda, 6: The positive from the Chivas midfielder was his passing was on point. The rest, however, was par for the course.
- E. Hernández, 3: This is supposed to be the guy who is coming in behind Mexico’s best players in the attack on the roster. After this game, if he is on the roster on Russia, then Osorio is seeing something that I surely am not. Being routinely dispossessed by this second-rate Bosnia side is unacceptable.
- G. dos Santos, 3: Osorio praised Gio for his fitness level before this match, leaving us interested to see what he had to offer. Well, after sky-balling several open opportunities, I can easily say my fear about his low level of play was confirmed.
- H. Martín, 4: As mentioned earlier, Gallardo has a shot to put the ball right on his head for an easy goal. Outside of that, he squandered possibly his only chance at a spot in the final 23 to Russia.
- C. Vela, 4: His lack of playing time, from Real Sociedad to today, is very evident. He doesn’t look like the Vela from even seven months ago.
- Aquino, 3: He, along with Dueñas and Ayala, have been finding a way onto the national team thanks to Liga MX play with Tigres. Tonight, Aquino was one of the worst in-form players to have stepped on the pitch.
- N. Araujo, 6: Similarly to Cota, he wasn’t too busy in this match. He did his job, earning an average grade.
- J. dos Santos, 6: His rating would’ve been a tad lower had he not assisted Ayala on the goal, but I must commend his efforts throughout the match. He definitely has the hustle, but will it fade over the MLS season leading up to the World Cup?
- R. Pizarro, 5: I mentioned that he is my automatic call-up from Chivas, however, I want to see more of his game. I thought he should’ve started. Unfortunately, his rating suffers from lack of playing time.
- Burrito, 5: I like Burrito Hernández. Although he isn’t blessed with the athleticism in some departments, he hustles and usually gets the job done, but I need to see more from him.
- J. González, 6: He should’ve started…there’s nothing else to say. In his small window of play in the second half, we saw glimpses of something special.
Juan Carlos Osorio, 3:
I do not understand what Osorio wants. He has a problem with Mexican’s abroad and their playing time with their clubs, yet, he sends out a player who hasn’t played in weeks in an all-important 2018 friendly. Yes, it’s a non-FIFA date, but these games have to be used for the absolute best available.
Why call Alanís over Carlos Vargas? They have similar physical attributes, the difference is one is playing and the other is not. Tonight we saw a slow, sloppy Alanís get burned by a Bosnian player which lead to his yellow card. Did you really think he was going to show up and shine?
In addition, the MLS guys, for the most part, did not hold their own. They were supposed to be vets, leaders, and they struggled to take over this game. One day, Osorio is saying Mexicans need to go to Europe, the next he calls up MLS players who haven’t played in ages. His mixed signals have me very, very worried about this World Cup appearance.