Juan Carlos Osorio has taken a risk, putting 39-year-old Rafa Marquez into his starting lineup to face Brazil in the teams' round of 16 match Monday.
Sporting the captain's armband, Marquez moves into the team with Miguel Layun dropped. Hugo Ayala also comes into the Mexico starting XI with center-back Hector Moreno suspended after picking up a pair of yellow cards in during the group stage of the tournament.
Marquez hasn't started for Mexico since the last year's Confederations Cup and is set to retire from football after the tournament ends. He'll likely like up in midfield, in front of a four-man back line with Carlos Salcedo taking Moreno's position as left center-back and Ayala lining up on the right. Jesus Gallardo and Edson Alvarez, Mexico's young fullbacks who started both a 2-1 victory over Korea and a 3-0 defeat to Sweden, are set to reprise their roles.
Along with Marquez in the midfield are veterans Andres Guardado and Hector Herrera, who have been playing together as a central partnership for the majority of the tournament. While Osorio said he hopes his team will look to control possession, he may be shoring up the middle of the team against a Brazil team with Neymar, Willian and Coutinho as attacking threats with Gabriel Jesus in front of them.
Up top, Carlos Vela likely will play on the right wing after spending most of the group stage as a playmaker, but he'll also be tasked with tracking back to help cover Alvarez. Hirving Lozano is on the left wing, hoping to build on his goal and assist in the tournament with Chicharito up top as the No. 9.
Brazil will line up as expected after the news that Marcelo would not start because of a spine injury, with Felipe Luis taking his place on the left.
Mexico XI: Ochoa; Alvarez, Ayala, Salcedo, Gallardo; Herrera, Marquez, Guardado; Vela, Chicharito, Lozano
Brazil XI: Alisson; Fagner, Silva, Miranda, Filipe; Paulinho, Casemiro, Coutinho; Willian, Gabriel Jesus, Neymar.