Mexico survived a Gold Cup group stage notable for a close final match against El Salvador, as well as losing key attacker Hirving Lozano in its opening scoreless draw against Trinidad & Tobago. But, as many expected, El Tri is moving on the knockout round, starting with a quarterfinal match on Saturday against a Honduras squad reeling with injuries.
Mexico is the reigning Gold Cup champion, beating the United States 1-0 in the 2019 final. Though Honduras hasn't made a final since 1991, it's a perennial Concacaf heavyweight that most recently made the final four in 2013. However, a trio of former Houston Dynamo FC teammates — current squad member Maynor Figueroa, Romell Quioto (now with CF Montreal), and Alberth Elis — have all suffered injuries throughout the tournament.
Here’s what you need to know ahead of the game.
- Saturday, July 24 | 10 pm ET
- State Farm Stadium, Glendale, Arizona
How to watch and stream
- FS1, Univision, TUDN
What to know: Mexico
Luis Alfonso Rodríguez, right back with Liga MX side Tigres, was the unlikely goal-scorer in Mexico's 1-0 win over El Salvador on Sunday, but it's a striker from Tigres' bitter rival, Monterrey's Rogelio Funes Mori, who has emerged as a pivotal player for El Tri in this tournament. Funes Mori had a brace in their 3-0 win over Guatemala — welcome considering Lozano's premature exit from the tournament and a paucity of true No. 9s on an otherwise loaded squad.
Mexico goalkeeper Alfredo Talavera may not have been as tested in the group stages as he'll be in the upcoming stretch of matches, but the UNAM player's been the starter throughout and has kept clean sheets the entire Gold Cup to date.
What to know: Honduras
It's been a bit of a rocky tournament for Los Catrachos, who lost to Qatar 2-0 on Sunday to round out its Group D performances, which also included a 3-2 win over Panama and a 4-0 pasting of Grenada. In losing to Qatar, Honduras missed out on first place in the group and a showdown with El Salvador, despite having a large and robust partisan crowd rooting them on against the Asian champs in BBVA Stadium. Now, they'll travel to Phoenix feeling like the visiting team, with a depleted lineup, against one of the two tournament favorites.
If Quioto, who's led the team in scoring this Gold Cup, is unable to go, look for veteran Jerry Bengtson to be the linchpin for Honduras.