Tata Martino Closes World Cup Door On Chicharito
Mexico manager Tata Martino has ruled out calling up veteran forward Javier Hernandez for the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
Affectionately nicknamed Chicharito, the former Manchester United striker has enjoyed a sensational season for Major League Soccer side Los Angeles Galaxy so far this season, scoring 15 goals in 29 games.
That form has prompted talk of a potential recall for the 34-year-old, who last featured for his country in 2019.
Despite Mexico sweating on the fitness of some of their leading marksmen ahead of the Mundiale, manager Martino is bent on choosing from three of Raul Jimenez, Rogelio Funes Mori, Henry Martin and Santiago Gimenez to lead his line at Qatar.
That means there will be no place for Chicharito, who is a veteran of three World Cups, scoring four goals in 12 appearances at FIFA's flagship tournament.
Speaking to reporters ahead of upcoming friendly games against Peru and Colombia, Martino said: "In the case of Chicharito, we are simply going with other forwards."
"We will try to choose the 26 players who are closest to our game."
"We have two [forwards] who can play and two who can't," Martino added.
"What I like is that we don't have not enough players. Four forwards are not going to go [to Qatar], but as long as they make it difficult for me to choose, I'm very happy about that. Surely there will be talk of who is left out, but the problem will be abundance and not scarcity."
Chicharito has scored 52 goals in 109 caps in total for Mexico, who have been placed in the same group as Argentina, Poland and Saudi Arabia in Qatar.