El Tri will close out its 2018 slate with a pair of matches in South America against La Albiceleste
Mexico is set to go two rounds with Argentina in the November friendly window, playing a pair of matches against La Albiceleste to close out its 2018 slate.
Both matches will take place in Argentina, federation spokeswoman Beatriz Ramos announced Wednesday, but the cities are yet to be announced. Rumors that emerged earlier this week indicated that one match will take place at Boca Juniors’ famed Bombonera while the second game could be held in the interior of the South American nation, but the official announcement will be made at a later date.
“We’ve reached an agreement with the Argentina Football Association for the FIFA date matches in November, for Saturday the 17th and Tuesday the 20th in cities to be defined,” Ramos said. “We’re very happy about the opponent and to play as visitors in this country and be able to have such a relevant moment.”
Mexico originally planned to head to Europe for the November window, but finding an opponent was difficult with most European nations taking part in the UEFA Nations League.
Both Mexico and Argentina currently are being led by an interim manager after falling short of fans’ expectations at the 2018 World Cup. Mexico reached the Round of 16 only to fall short at that stage once again, with Tigres manager Tuca Ferretti taking over for Juan Carlos Osorio, who left to pursue a new project. Argentina was bounced by eventual champion France in the same round after winning just one match in a disappointing group stage. Lionel Scaloni is leading the way after Jorge Sampaoli’s exit.
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Argentina star Lionel Messi is yet to make his national team return after the World Cup, though some members of the Argentine press already are speculating that November could be the window in which he accepts a call-up again.
Many of Mexico’s stars also have stayed away, with Ferretti bringing through a new generation of El Tri talent. PSV winger Hirving Lozano and Wolves forward Raul Jimenez have been constants, but Porto midfielder Hector Herrera, West Ham forward Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez and Real Betis midfielder Andres Guardado all have stayed in Europe for both the September and October international windows.
The teams last met in 2015 at AT&T Stadium near Dallas, Texas, with Messi scoring in the 89th minute to cap a two-goal rally and secure a 2-2 draw. Javier “Chicharito” Hernanez had opened the scoring in the 19th minute and Hector Herrera added a second in the 70th.