El Tri set for Mexico return in October friendlies

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Mexico will face Costa Rica and Chile, making their first trip in the country but outside Mexico City since 2015

Mexico will face Costa Rica and Chile in October in a pair of friendlies that will take place in Mexico, the FMF announced Wednesday.

The contest against the Ticos will take place on Oct. 11 in Monterrey at Tigres' Estadio Universitario, also known as El Volcan. Five days later El Tri will host Chile in Queretaro at Gallos Blancos' Corregidora. It is the first time Mexico will play in its home country since a June 2 match against Scotland that served as the team's send-off to the World Cup.

It's also the first time the Mexico national team will play a friendly in Mexico but outside the capital since an Oct. 2015 friendly against Panama that took place in Toluca's Estadio Nemesio Diez. Mexico's current interim manager, Ricardo "Tuca" Ferretti coached the team in that match during his previous stint as the El Tri interim coach. 

The last time the senior national team played in El Volcan was a 2010 friendly against Colombia, while Queretaro played host to a 2014 matchup against Panama. The national team uses most FIFA dates to play friendly matches in the United States, where the immensely popular team is able to sell a large number of tickets - usually at higher prices than fans in Mexico are accustomed to paying. 

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After a 1-0 defeat to the United States on Tuesday, Ferretti said Mexico needs to schedule more challenging matches and stop putting commercial concerns ahead of the on-field project.

"We should have more tough games than we've got right now," Ferretti said. "With all respect to the Americans, we should have more games away from here, having away games against Paraguay, against Uruguay away as well, with the Brazilians in Brazil. This would help us to take the next step."

El Tri is expected to head to Europe for the November window, though it is yet to make an official announcement.

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