‘Tata’ Martino: The positive and the negative after six knockout games with El Tri

At ESPN Digital we offer some conclusions of what Gerardo Martino has shown at the head of the Mexican National Team heading to Qatar 2022

Gerardo ‘Tata’ Martino lived his first six World Cup qualifying games with Mexico. The national strategist knew what it is to play in the Concacaf and suffered from everything. Despite these circumstances, he is leading the Octagonal and will now experience the two most complicated visits in this phase, which are against Canada and the United States.

Then in ESPN Digital we leave you the negative and positive points of Martino after six zone playoff games.


Finish leader and with 14 points out of 18

The most important thing, in the end, are the points. Martino finished with Mexico as the leader and undefeated after six games. In addition, they have 14 of 18 units and are wide favorites to follow in the first place of the Octagonal and secure a place in Qatar 2022.

After ‘Lobo de Tepeji’ reached the November FIFA date, it took three games and 184 minutes to return to goal with Tricolor. Jiménez had not scored since November 17, 2020 with the national team when he scored a goal in a friendly against Japan.

Three goals against in six games

Although Martino had trouble finding answers on defense, the goal is well covered with Guillermo Ochoa and only received three goals in six games, same that came from Panama, Canada and Jamaica.

After the loss of the game of players like Andrew Saved or Hector Herrera, it took Lozano three games to raise his hand and take on the role of protagonist and team leader. With his experience in Europe and the good individual moment he lives, he showed himself fearlessly and boldly against rivals in the area.

He arrives with room for maneuver on visits to Canada and the United States.

Being undefeated and three points ahead of the United States, comes with a favorable margin of maneuver against visits to Canada and the land of the stars and stripes. In case of losing in both, he will only lose the leadership of the Octagonal, but he will not leave the first three places and would have time to recover the points with the remaining matches.


With few variations to the style of play and his 4-3-3

True to his style, Martino jumped 4-3-3 in each game and as the minutes progressed he showed tactical variations; However, the strategist limited himself to this system to start and little surprised well-worked teams such as Canada or even Panama, the same teams with which he tied.

Problems calling Europeans

Hirving Lozano and Raúl Jiménez were his headache in the first three games, and he couldn’t count on them for the games against Jamaica, Costa Rica and Panama. The ‘Chucky’ did not come due to the injury he suffered in the last Gold Cup, while Jiménez did not receive permission from Wolverhampton to travel.

Without fixed right back and centrals

One of the points where he still does not have clear answers is in defense, and the rotation of players in the area is clear. Martino continues to test variants with the centrals and the right back, a position in which the undisputed starters are far from being defined.

Martino tested Hector Moreno, Cesar Montes, Nestor Araujo, Julio César Domínguez, Luis Rodriguez and Jorge Sanchez in these positions and has not yet found those who are profiled towards Qatar.

He does not close the games and suffers from more

The games he won he suffered from more. With Jamaica he won at the last minute. Against Costa Rica he could not get more goals ahead. Against Honduras it could be more than three and against El Salvador he scored the second in compensation time.

In this way, it seems that something is missing in the forcefulness and confidence of the national players to close the games promptly.

Twice he lost the Chivas player through injury. First against Costa Rica and now against El Salvador. Both times, Vega was injured and struggled to keep up with his team back in Liga MX.