This is not how Mexico would’ve wanted to commence their 2022 FIFA World Cup journey. Mere days before the Mexico men’s national team strats Group C performance in Qatar against Poland on Tuesday, Nov. 22, the squad falls to a defeat by Sweden 2-1 in an international friendly. Happening at the Estadi Montilivi in Spain, Tata Martino’s Mexico team set to appear for the World Cup faced the Sweden side that isn’t taking part in the quadrennial tournament and did not have its marquee players in the starting XI or on the bench.
After a goalless opening 45 minutes, it was Sweden that finally crushed the deadlock in the 54th minute. Left midfielder Mattias Svanberg shot a low cross from the left flank that swooshed past some Mexican defenders, including Swedish striker Viktor Gyökeres, before eventually reaching the unmarked right midfielder Marcus Rohdén for a fine finish past Guillermo Ochoa.