12 October 2019 04:50
The month of October brings us the newest competition in international football: the CONCACAF Nations League kicks off this week for the biggest teams in North and Central America. The hope is that the tournament can have the same success as the UEFA Nations League and bring some competitive juice to teams that would otherwise be playing friendlies until the start of the World Cup Qualifiers. And on Friday, the Gold Cup champions begin their journey, hoping for a big win to confirm their status as favorites in Group B.: Friday, October 11: 9:00 PM ET: TUDN: fuboTV (watch for free The 12 teams in League A of the Nations League will fight for four places in the semi-finals that will take place next year, and with only four games to play in October and November, every point counts. Mexico are expected to be in the semis, and with Bermuda and Panama alongside them in Group B, they are big favorites to advance. Manager Tata Martino is making plenty of changes to the Gold Cup winning squad.
Star striker Raul Jimenez is not there, but some big names are: Chucky Lozano, Tecatito Corona, Hector Herrera, and Rodolfo Pizarro are the most talented players on this team and more than good enough to lead them to victory. Hirving Lozano and Jose Juan Macias are among potential starters for Tata Martino in El Tri's Concacaf Nations League debut against Bermuda begins life in the Concacaf Nations League on Friday, facing Bermuda just outside. El Tri manager Tata Martino has called in a number of young players as he looks to strengthen both the senior team and the group that will seek Olympic qualification and then contest the tournament in Tokyo. But there also are stars like Hirving Lozano, Hector Herrera and Jesus "Tecatito" Corona in the mix - and they're not just in Bermuda to enjoy the beach. Will Martino blend experience with youth, try to play the most experienced team possible or toss the young players into the deep end?
Bermuda have included three new faces in their 23-man squad for their Concacaf Nations League match with regional powerhouse Mexico at the National Stadium tomorrow. Bermuda, second in group B behind Panama on goal difference, are ranked 167th in the Fifa world rankings while Mexico, who won the Gold Cup last summer, are ranked twelfth. Coach Kyle Lightbourne is optimistic going into the match, with Bermudas confidence boosted after they turned a 4-1 home loss to Panama into a 2-0 away win in Panama in their last outing. We know theyre the number one team, so were just going to play and enjoy the match. Bather, who will again partner captain Dante Leverock in the heart of the defence, is looking forward to playing against the regions top team.
The race to win Group 1B looks tight after Bermuda and Panama each notched victories over one another away from home. Mexico begins its tournament on Friday and could quickly move three points clear if its win the opener before getting the better of Panama on Tuesday. The defending Gold Cup champions would be considered rampant favorites to win its pool and likely with a perfect record—but Gerardo Martino will be wary of falling complacent. The odds for Friday's fixture look particularly strong when taking into account Bermuda lost 4-1 in its only other home game in the group so far.