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Friday, October 10, 2008
Mexico expects tougher test against Jamaica

KINGSTON, Jamaica -- As expected, Mexico is on the verge of clinching a place in the last round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying.

A win at Jamaica on Saturday would put Mexico into the next round.

The Mexicans came away 3-0 winners in a home match with Jamaica, but anticipate a harder test this time around.

"It is very difficult to understand how Jamaica will play," Mexico coach Sven-Goran Eriksson said. "The truth is, it is complicated."

After three matches, Mexico leads the four-team Group 2 with nine points, three ahead of Honduras. Canada and Jamaica drew 1-1 and have one point each.

Since losing to Mexico, Jamaica has made several changes, included firing Rene Simoes as head coach and replacing him with interim coach Theodore Whitmore.

"We know that he [Whitmore] has called new players who were not a part of the first set of games; therefore they are a rival we know very little about," Eriksson said.

Giovani dos Santos, Carlos Vela and Rafael Marquez will lead Mexico's bid for victory.

"I think we will secure qualification against Jamaica," the Swede added. "After that I think the game against Canada will be very easy, although all 23 players are in consideration for the games."

Whitmore believes his squad, led by Jamal Ryce-Campbell, Ricardo Fuller, Luton Shelton and Damion Stewart, is capable of beating Mexico.

"We're gunning for those three points and nothing less," Whitmore said. "Nothing less will be tolerated come Saturday, and I think the players have given me the encouragement that they can take these three valuable points."




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