With a 2-nil victory at home over Costa Rica last Friday night, 15-time World Cup finalists Mexico have taken control over the fifth round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying, better known as the Hexagonal or Hex.
The El Tri as the Mexicans are called are now first with seven points out of three games following a 2-1 win against the USA, a goalless draw with Panama and Friday night’s triumph.
Javier Hernández (7th minute), better known as Chicharito, and Néstor Araujo (45th minute) scored in a match in which Mexico were always in control.
Chicharito made history when he scored his 46th goal in his 89th game, equalling the goal scoring record of Mexican legend Jared Borgetti, who also took 89 games to reach 46 goals.
Expectations are now that Chicharito will make further history by scoring number 47.
Whether this will be the case against a wiling-to-fight Trinidad and Tobago tonight remains to be seen.
The forward, who played off the left of Club América striker Oribe Peralta, picked up an injury on Friday and had to be substituted in the 67th minute.
Chicharito or not, Mexico will be the favourites when they face Trinidad and Tobago at the Hasely Crawford Stadium from 7 pm (POWER 102.1 fm to bring you LIVE Coverage of the match). Panama host the USA and Honduras engage second-placed Costa Rica also tonight.
Trinidad and Tobago, who beat Panama on Friday 1-0 for their first victory in the Hexagonal, are currently fifth in the Hexagonal standings but new team coach Denis Lawrence assisted by former England defender Sol Campbell were planning the team’s continuing resurgence after earlier losses to Costa Rica 2-0 and Honduras 3-1.
In 11 previous World Cup qualifiers dating back to 1973 and up to their last clash in 2009, Trinidad and Tobago who remain the smallest nation (in size and population) to ever qualify for a FIFA World Cup have won just three and with two drawn outcomes.
The current squad of players and staff showed improved defesive and offensive structure in beating off Panama and though goalscorer Kevin Molino is out, coach Lawrence has talent-strung goal-scorers in Willis Plaza, 19-year-ol Levi Garcia, lanky captain Kenwyn Jones and attacking midfielder Joevin Jones.
Midfielders Daneil Cyrus, Cordell Cato and defenders Daneil Cyrus, Curtis Gonzales and Mekeil williams played tough against Panama, a virtual dress rehearsal for tonight’s game against the quick-passing Mexicans.
Real Sociedad San Sebastián forward, Carlos Vela, who also played at Arsenal will be the one to watch for Mexico. The right-winger’s refusal to play for El Tri for a couple years means that he is not the most popular figure in Mexican football but he is looking to be on the ball.