Mexico coach Gerardo Martino will likely have a late decision to make when his side begin their World Cup challenge against Poland at Stadium 974.
The former Barcelona boss is already without key forward Jesus ‘Tecatito’ Corona for the tournament due to injury, and he will have to make a game-time decision on another focal point of his attack, who did make the final squad, ahead of the Group C clash.
Hirving Lozano, Edson Alvarez and Raul Jimenez were all included in the 26-man party, but the latter is struggling with a groin problem.
Current La Blaugrana star Robert Lewandowski is the leading light for Poland, and will be the man expected to shoulder the burden of their hopes.
Here’s all the latest team news we know ahead of kickoff.
Mexico vs. Poland lineups
Corona’s absence is a blow to Martino’s plans, with the Sevilla forward having played a key role in their qualification to the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
His starting place is likely to be taken by Alexis Vega, in an altered 4-3-3 system, with Martino able to rely on some crucial experience elsewhere in his squad through Guillermo Ochoa, Nestor Araujo and Jesus Gallardo.
Wolves star Jimenez will lead El Tri’s attack, if passed fit, with Eredivisie-based duo Edson Alvarez and Erick Gutierrez worth keeping an eye on in midfield.
Poland’s two key players stood up and made the difference in their 2022 World Cup playoff win over Sweden back in March, with Lewandowski and Piotr Zielinski both on target in a 2-0 win.
Coach Czeslaw Michniewicz switched between tactical formations during their UEFA Nations League campaign but he looks to be settled on a 3-4-3, with Lewandowski as the focal point.
Mexico starting 11 (projected):
(4-3-3, right to left): 13. Ochoa (GK) — 19. Sanchez, 2. Araujo, 3. Montes, 23. Gallardo — 18. Guardado, 4 E. Alvarez, 14. Gutierrez — 10. Vega, 9. Jimenez, 22. Lozano
Injured: — Jimenez (groin injury) will be assessed ahead of KO.
Jimenez’s injury status will impact Martino’s final selection, with the latter prepared to give him every chance to prove his match fitness.
If this game comes too soon for the Wolves forward, Lozano could move inside, with Cruz Azul’s Carlos Rodriguez deployed in an attacking role.
Poland starting 11 (projected):
(3-4-3 right to left): 1. Szczesny (GK) — 5. Bednarek, 14. Kiwior, 15. Gilik — 17. Zurkowski, 10. Krychowiak, 4. Bielik, 21. Zalewski — 20. Zielinski, 9. Lewandowski, 19. Szymanski