Chepo predicting hard-fought midfield battle in Honduras

Mexico continues its World Cup qualifying campaign in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, and coach Jose Manuel de la Torre is expecting a physical encounter.

Mexico coach Jose Manuel “Chepo” de la Torre is expecting a physically tough test against Honduras, but he hopes his team can give as much as it takes.

“At home, (Honduras) has to be aggressive, in the good sense of the word, not violent,” Chepo said in a pre-match press conference Thursday. “That’s what I’m expecting and that’s what we’re also going to do.”

De La Torre went on to say that he thinks the game will be hard-fought in the midfield, perhaps explaining his reasoning behind the selection of veterans like Carlos Salcido and Gerardo Torrado in his squad -- though he stopped short of giving away anything regarding his lineup choices.

The Mexico coach is confident his players have the mentality to deal with the physicality of the game, the hostile atmosphere and the intense heat in the Estadio Olimpico, where Los Catrachos defeated the United States 2-1 in the first game of the CONCACAF hexagonal on Feb. 6.

“(The players) that are in the national team are there because they have the character to confront any situation in any place,” said Chepo.

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