The days are flying and Mexico's debut in the 2022 World Cup is near.
Gerardo Martino will wait until Nov. 14 to announce the final squad for the tournament, but at this point, the core of players that will be facing Argentina, Saudi Arabia and Poland is pretty clear.
So clear that we can already start envisioning the XI we will see in the debut against Poland on Nov. 22.
Potential Mexico World Cup Starting XI vs Poland
Goalkeeper: Guillermo Ochoa
There is zero doubt about Memo Ochoa being between the sticks. Gerardo Martino confirmed his selection after the friendly against Iraq and nobody seems to disagree.
Defenders: Jorge Sánchez, César Montes, Héctor Moreno, Jesús Gallardo
Kevin Álvarez had a couple of chances to take the starting spot as Mexico's right fullback, but he wasn't convincing enough. So despite his struggles in Ajax, you should expect Jorge Sánchez to fill the position.
In the center of the defense, Cachorro Montes is a favorite in Martino's head, while Héctor Moreno and Néstor Araujo are fighting to grab the other spot. Since Moreno plays along with Montes in Monterrey, he might have a slight advantage.
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On the left, Gerardo Arteaga challenged Jesús Gallardo and, for a moment, took the lead heading to Qatar. However, the Rayados' fullback resurrected during the last semester and after a solid performance against Iraq – including his first international goal for Mexico – basically sealed his place in the starting XI vs. Poland.
Midfielders: Edson Álvarez, Héctor Herrera, Carlos Rodríguez
This is a tough one. We are still trying to figure out what Gerardo Martino plans to do here and we even wonder if Martino knows what he will do.
We assume Edson Álvarez is the anchor of this midfield, with Herrera doing a blend of defensive and attacking tasks and Charly Rodríguez roaming free behind the frontline.
However, rumors are floating around, saying that Edson Álvarez could be benched to start Luis Chavez along with Herrera and Rodríguez. There are also voices wondering about the role of Erick Gutiérrez.
Once Martino informs the final list to Qatar on Nov. 14 and after the friendly match against Sweden on Nov. 16, we should have a better picture of what we are going to see against Poland.
Forwards: Hirving Lozano, Rogelio Funes Mori, Alexis Vega
Chucky Lozano is a safe bet in the starting XI. However, since Tecatito Corona is injured, we are not going to see him on the left but on the right.
The striker? Raúl Jiménez is the starter on Martino's head, but the Wolves man has been battling against a groin injury that is risking his place in the final 26-player list for Qatar. The thing is that even making the cut, he will not be one hundred percent ready for Poland, giving his spot to Rogelio Funes Mori.
El Mellizo is not a fan favorite, but Martino insists he does a great job linking plays and it will not be weird seeing him starting vs. the Polish.
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Finally, on the left, Alexis Vega is seizing the moment and seems to be grabbing the vacant spot left by Corona. The Chivas' winger had a great season and Martino has praised his effort during the training sessions.