Mexico World Cup 2022 guide: Key players, injuries, tactics & tournament prediction

Mexico will be hoping to spring a few surprises
Mexico will be hoping to spring a few surprises / Briony Painter | 90min

Mexico come into this tournament hoping that they can upset the odds and perhaps sneak their way into the quarter-finals.

Fascinatingly, at the last seven World Cups, Mexico have reached the Round of 16 before being knocked out. It is a curse that the Central American nation is extremely keen to lift.

Their best ever finish is the quarter-finals which they reached on home soil in 1970 and 1986.

Here's what to expect from Mexico at the 2022 World Cup.

When are Mexico's group games?

  • Mexico vs Poland (November 22, 19:00 GMT)
  • Argentina vs Mexico (November 26, 22:00 GMT)
  • Saudi Arabia vs Mexico (November 30, 22:00 GMT)
  • Mexico vs Poland H2H record: Played 3, Won 1, Drawn 2
  • Mexico vs Argentina H2H record: Played 12, Won 1, Drawn 2, Lost 9
  • Mexico vs Saudi Arabia H2H record: Played 0

Who is in Mexico's confirmed 26-player squad for the World Cup?

Goalkeepers: Guillermo Ochoa (Club America), Alfredo Talavera (Juarez), Rodolfo Cota (Club Leon)

Defenders: Jorge Sanchez (Ajax), Nestor Araujo (Club America), Gerardo Arteaga (Genk), Kevin Alvarez (CF Pachuca), Jesus Gallardo (Monterrey), Cesar Montes (Monterrey), Hector Moreno (Monterrey), Johan Vazquez (Cremonese)

Midfielders: Orbelin Pineda (AEK Athens), Carlos Rodriguez (Cruz Azul), Uriel Antuna (Cruz Azul), Roberto Alvarado (Guadalajara), Hector Herrera (Houston Dynamo), Erick Gutierrez (PSV), Luis Chavez (Pachuca), Luis Romo (Monterrey), Andres Guardado (Real Betis), Edson Alvarez (Ajax), Hirving Lozano (Napoli)

Forwards: Henry Martin (Club America), Rogelio Funes Mori (Monterrey), Raul Jimenez (Wolves), Alexis Vega (Chivas)

Which Mexico players are missing the World Cup through injury?

The major downside for Mexico coming into this tournament is that Jesus Corona is not going to recover in time from an ACL injury.

Another issue is that Raul Jimenez is rushing to get back to fitness for the tournament, meaning Mexico could be without two of their best players.

Who are Mexico's best players?

Raul Jimenez
Raul Jimenez hopes to lead the line for Mexico / Matthew Ashton - AMA/GettyImages

Raul Jimenez

Working on the assumption that Raul Jimenez will be fit for the tournament given he was on the bench in their most recent friendly, he will be the focal point of the attack. He has played nearly 100 times for the national team, scoring 29 goals.

Hirving Lozano

It has been a really good first chunk of the season for Hirving Lozano and Napoli as he has cemented his place on the right wing. He's up to almost 60 Mexico appearances now and will be another leader in the squad.

Edson Alvarez

The 24-year-old Edson Alvarez has become a key player in the Ajax midfield and he is also capable of playing in defence if needed. He was the youngest player in the 2018 squad so he is no stranger to the World Cup experience.

Hector Herrera

Another key player in the Mexico midfield who will bring heaps of experience is Hector Herrera. The former Porto and Atletico Madrid man is now at Houston Dynamo and he has made over 100 appearances for the national team.

Mexico predicted starting lineup

A 4-3-3 is the likely setup that Mexico coach Gerardo Martino will go with for the group stage matches and they will back themselves to progress once again.

Mexico predicted XI: Ochoa; Arteaga, Vasquez, Montes, Sanchez; Alvarez, Rodriguez, Herrera; Lozano, Jimenez, Vega.

Mexico's form going into the World Cup

Mexico have been playing a lot of friendlies in recent months without the players that feature for teams in Europe. This means that they could have a better understanding of each other than many other teams.

They have had a mixed bag of recent results without their star players, but it's tough to draw too many conclusions from those games.

Mexico's last five results (all competitions)

Jamaica 1-1 Mexico
Mexico 0-1 Paraguay
Mexico 1-0 Peru
Mexico 2-3 Colombia
Mexico 4-0 Iraq

Where will Mexico finish in the World Cup?

It feels cruel to predict another Round of 16 departure for Mexico, but that's exactly how we see it going this year too.

There is a very realistic chance that they will come second in their group, behind Argentina and ahead of Poland, and that would likely set them up for a meeting with reigning champions France in the next round.

With Les Bleus always among the favourites to go the whole way, the Round of 16 could be where Mexico's fun comes to a stop.

Prediction: Round of 16