The Burrito Wrap – 24th Feb 2014

Happy Birthday image

After its absence last week the Burrito Wrap is back with its usual three tasty stories.

 

Happy Birthday Tuca…

 

Tuca Ferreti was celebrating his sixtieth birthday this weekend and was given the perfect present as Tigres finally got their season up and running with a laboured 1-0 victory at home to Veracruz. Whilst Tuca may not look a day over 21, Tigres have been playing like a group of pensioners recently (and that’s bit harsh on the pensioners). It was more of the same on Saturday, as aside from Duenas’ wonder goal the game was slow paced, lacking in urgency, and generally a rather large bore-fest.

 

Nonetheless, Pumas remarkable turnaround will give the Monterrey side hope that salvation is not far away. In the last edition of The Burrito Wrap we spoke about how many teams were struggling to find a second win of the season, and while the landscape has changed somewhat in the last two weeks, the unbelievable volatility of this season’s Liga MX means Tigres are now only four points off 8th position. Incredibly, it is the same deficit as it was at the end of January after just four games when I wrote my piece defending the manager.

 

Tigres play Chivas in Guadalajara next week, then leaders Cruz Azul visit El Volcan in Round 10, before a slightly easier run of games through to the end of the season. Tigres left it late to push into the top eight last season, and if they can get something out of their next two games, a place in the Liguilla may yet look like being very achievable.

 

Goalkeepers, Mexico’s weak point…

 

This may be an unpopular opinion, but it’s true: Mexican goalkeepers are nearly as bad as Mexican referees. Whilst some of Mexico’s most revered historical players have been goalkeepers, and of course some modern day keepers such as Ochoa and Corona buck the trend – they are very much the exceptions which prove the rule.

 

Yet again this week we saw a dreadful goalkeeping error from Queretaro’s Edgar Hernández, as he managed to get beaten off an audacious volley from almost the halfway line by Cruz Azul’s Rogelio Chávez. Let’s be clear, this wasn’t a lob where the keeper is too far off his line and struggles to get back – Hernandez was back in plenty of time to save the effort and had the ball come to him at a comfortable height to simply catch, but he contrived to palm the ball onto his post and consequently into the net. Take nothing away from Chavez, it was a great effort regardless, but the goalkeeping was amateurish in the extreme.

 

Of course, as we all know, goalkeepers have arguably the toughest job on the pitch – underappreciated when doing well, yet mistakes magnified when something goes wrong that inevitably leads to a goal. Yet it’s not even just the standout howlers such as Hernandez’s at the weekend that are problematic in the Liga MX – the goalkeepers all seem a bit, well… rubbish. Their positioning is generally poor, they are appalling in the air, the consistently punch the ball when they should catch it, and are generally poor shot-stoppers. Brutal but true. Barely a weekend goes by without me screaming at the TV in exasperation at another keeper’s hapless performance (although, granted, it has been eased slightly by Tigres dropping Palos in recent games!).

 

Do Mexican clubs even employ goalkeeping coaches? It doesn’t seem like it… I played in goal until I was about eight and a half, I’ll happily give them a few pointers in exchange for a free ticket!

 

All Change at Rayados…

 

So Profe Cruz lasted a little under six months in the Monterrey hot seat, as Rayados last week followed Atlante and Morelia in instigating a mid-season managerial change.

 

Frankly, the decision comes as no surprise – the only surprising thing is that Monterrey’s board considered sacking the much-loved Vucetich and replacing him Cruz to be a shrewd move in the first place. Fans made their feelings well-known in the 2-0 home defeat to Leon, chanting their former manager’s name throughout the game.

 

Cruz does have a reasonably impressive CV, having won the title with Atlante and consequently leading them into the 2009 FIFA Club World Cup where they were beaten 3-1 by Barcelona in the semi-final. His insistence on playing with one striker was never going to be popular with the Rayados support, however, and his tactics looked positively doomed as soon as Humberto Suazo picked up his lengthy injury.

 

Despite rumours circling about Chepo being given the role, the board have wisely not replaced him with a permanent successor, opting instead to hand the reigns to Carlos Barra and José Treviño until the end of the season.

 

I wonder if anyone in Monterrey still have Victor’s number?!

 

By Daniel Price

To continue the debate you can add a comment below or find me on Twitter by following @MexFooty

 

** the photo is used under a Creative Commons license from Will Clayton

Category:

Comments

Jason Marquitz's picture

Here's my current breakdown of starting GKs:

Keepers that can be considered good (and not in any particular order): Corona, Munoz, Talavera, Orozco, Saucedo, Sanchez,

Keepers that are decent: Rodriguez (GDL), Rodriguez (MOR), Yarbrough (sorry ... it was just a good day), Frausto, Garcia (benefit of the doubt. I'm not sure yet, but his predecessor was definitely not to be trusted) 

Keepers that I wouldn't trust at all: Pikolin (sorry, Pumas fans), Hernandez (QTO), Perez, Villalpando, Vilar, Patino, Hernandez (VER)

Saucedo is one of the better keepers, but was still at fault for one of the Santos goals last week, and I think Orozco is a shadow of the player he was 2/3 years ago...

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