Herrera warns El Tri not to underestimate New Zealand

El Tri continued preparation for its all-or-nothing playoff with the Kiwis with an easy friendly win over Altamira
Two goals from Luis Montes helped Mexico to a 4-0 friendly win over second division outfit Altamira on Saturday, as Miguel Herrera and El Tri continued preparation for the upcoming playoff against New Zealand.

Francisco “Maza” Rodriguez opened the scoring early for El Tri, with Marco Cruz – an America Under-20 player brought in to make up the numbers – adding the final goal.

Mexico started the game in Herrera’s usual 5-3-2 formation, with Moises Munoz in goal, Rafa Marquez, Rodriguez and Miguel Herrera in central defense and Paul Aguilar and Miguel Layun as the wingbacks.

In midfield, Juan Carlos Medina played the holding role with Carlos Pena and Montes further forward linking with strikers Oribe Peralta and Aldo de Nigris.

After the game, coach Herrera gave a press conference in which he stated how pleased he is with the work El Tri has done in training, but stressed the real test will be against New Zealand.

“It would be the stupidest thing on our part to underestimate any team, partly because we are suffering,” said Herrera.

The coach – on loan for America – added that he feels New Zealand will use an aerial approach and that next Wednesday’s friendly against Finland in San Diego should help in preparation for the World Cup playoff.

In other news, Herrera acknowledged that a replacement player could be called into the squad depending on how Lucas Lobos’ family situation develops and said that Rubens Sambueza is now a Mexican citizen and should receive his passport in the next week.