Tomorrow night in Foxboro Miguel Herrera will reveal a good portion of his World Cup starting eleven when El Tri face off against Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal.
Not knowing your starting eleven or at least a good portion of it has come back to haunt Herrera as this will be the first and only match he will have to see his starting unit in action, which does not bode well for El Tri in terms of team chemistry. This will be the last chance for Mexico to finalize its starting eleven as some of the positions have already been defined.
If any of the positions have been set it is surely to be the defensive line. Captain and leader of the defense Rafael Marquez remains in doubt to start on Friday after suffering from a bruised foot sustained in a friendly against Ecuador. By looks of things Diego Reyes and Hector Moreno are favorites to start alongside him in against Portugal and in Brazil.
Paul Aguilar being rested on Tuesday tells us he has the right wing back all but wrapped up. He is a sure starter for Friday and June 13. Miguel Layun had a battle with Andres Guardado, but he too looks to have a similar destiny as his Club America teammate.
The biggest question surrounding this game is who is going to be in goal? The top candidates are Jose de Jesus Corona and Guillermo Ochoa and the real question should be whether or not Ochoa did enough in his friendly and in training to claim the number one spot. Several reports out of Mexico, specifically from TVC Deportes, suggest that Corona is not be in contention to start Friday, the report did not say whether it was the manager’s decision or whether Corona’s neck injury was a factor.
While this remains an important friendly for Mexico, Portugal on the other hand are more concerned with nursing the world's best player, Ronaldo, back to health. Hehas been struggling with a thigh injury and now it has been reported that his knee injury is due to a mild case of tendonitis. Ronaldo returned to training with ball on Tuesday and looked to be making good progress.
His teammate, Luis Nani, who was interviewed by Fifa.com said Ronaldo was looking well and in good spirits. "We hope that Cristiano is in good enough shape to play -- and to help the team," Nani, said. "If for some reason he is not there, whoever is there playing has to be confident in their ability to get the job done."
Portugal also has injury concerns over newly crowned Champions League winner, Pepe, who is also suffering from a leg injury.
Mexico vs Portugal can be seen on ESPN2 and UniMas at 5:30 pm.