Europe-based players dominate Mexico squad for World Cup qualifiers

Sebastian Salazar and Herculez Gomez react to Liga MX’s response in wake of the recent earthquake in Mexico.

Mexico announced a strong squad dominated by Europe-based players for upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Trinidad & Tobago on Oct. 6 in San Luis Potosi and away in Honduras on Oct. 10.

MLS duo Jonathan and Giovani dos Santos were both picked despite LA Galaxy’s lackluster form, while coach Juan Carlos Osorio named 12 players who are with European clubs, including West Ham’s Javier Hernandez and Porto quartet Hector Herrera, Miguel Layun, Jesus “Tecatito” Corona and Diego Reyes.

Mexico has already qualified for Russia 2018 and there was some suggestion that key players could be rested, but Osorio has opted for a strong squad.

Tigres midfielder Jesus Duenas and Chivas duo Orbelin Pineda and Rodolfo Pizarro were the more notable absentees, as was Jurgen Damm, although he is out of action for three weeks with an injury.

Thirty-eight-year-old Rafa Marquez hasn’t played since August and naturally misses out, with the former Barcelona player sidelined after being sanctioned by the U.S. Treasury Department for an alleged connection to a drug trafficking organization.

Mexico boss Juan Carlos Osorio named a strong side on Thursday.

Of the more surprising names, Chivas center-back Oswaldo Alanis gets another chance after disappointing at the Confederations Cup.

El Tri sits on 18 points from its first eight games in the CONCACAF Hexagonal and is undefeated so far as it looks to surpass the 22-point tally posted by Ricardo La Volpe’s teams in the 2005 Hex.

Mexican football federation (FMF) president Decio de Maria announced Thursday that the FMF would be donating seven million pesos ($386,000) to help reconstruction following Sept. 19’s devastating earthquake in Mexico City. The national team will also be helping in a series of different ways leading up to the World Cup, he said.

Here’s the full squad:

Goalkeepers: Rodolfo Cota (Chivas), Guillermo Ochoa…

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