Dos a Cero

USA vs. Mexico: “Dos a Cero” curse comes to an end

by Carlos D. Mojica ()| Photo by Jorge O. Martínez

On a cold November night, the U.S. fell to Mexico to the tune of 2-1 thanks to goals by Miguel Layún and Rafael Márquez. The game was heated from beginning to end, and was only won in the dying minutes as Márquez headed in the winner off a corner kick.

“We expected a strong team, a team with several players that are playing at a high level,” said Jozy Altidore. “This is a lesson for us.”

Rolling out a 3-4-1-2 formation, the U.S. was faced by a Mexican side that was methodical and put pressure on the Yanks from the very first minute. With Christian Pulisic playing behind Bobby Wood and Jozy Altidore, it was evident the Americans were still getting used to their new formation.

Mexico fired off a few warning shots before scoring, hitting the woodwork early on. In the 20th minute, Layún fired off a rocket that beat Howard, giving El Tri the lead and putting an end to the fabled Dos a Cero.

How should U.S.A. line up against Mexico in Columbus?

by Carlos D. Mojica () | Photo by Jorge O. Martínez

Jürgen Klinsmann recently released the U.S. Men’s National Team 26-man roster ahead of its match against Mexico. While the names in the roster should not surprise anyone who’s been following the American squad this year, there may be some questions regarding who should be in the starting XI.

With this in mind, here’s my take on who should start for the Stars and Stripes come November 11.

Formation: 4-1-3-2

GK - Tim Howard: While Howard may not be in his prime anymore, he has continually stepped up for the U.S. when the team has needed him. If any goalkeeper can keep a clean sheet for the Yanks, it’s Howard.

RB – DeAndre Yedlin: Over the past two years, Yedlin has made the right back spot his own. His time in England has helped remedy the defensive woes that once plagued him. No surprise here.

CB – John Brooks: Sidelined by injury during the previous set of World Cup Qualifiers, Brooks returned for last month’s friendly against Cuba and has made six starts for Hertha Berlin. He is back to his best, which is good news considering Mexico’s attack.

Columbus, once again, will be US fortress in game against Mexico

Dos a Cero 2013

For the fifth straight time, the U.S. Men's National Team will play Mexico in Columbus during the Final Round of CONCACAF qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Friday, Nov. 11. Dating back to a frigid night on Feb. 28, 2001, the quadrennial "Hex" encounter with Mexico has grown to become the biggest international soccer match on U.S. soil, with the Americans winning by the familiar 2-0, or "Dos a Cero" score line, on each occasion.

For the third time in the past five World Cup Qualifying cycles, the U.S. will face Mexico to open the final round of qualifying, also known as the "Hex" [the odds of that happening? 0.81 percent]. In the past four cycles, the United States has collected 2-0 shutout victories in this fixture, establishing the rally cry of "Dos a Cero" for U.S. supporters.

On two occasions - in 2005 and 2013 - the 2-0 victories secured the USA's advancement to the World Cup.

It's not just against Mexico that the U.S. has had success in CBus. The MNT is unbeaten in 11 matches at MAPFRE Stadium, holding an 8-0-3 lifetime record with a remarkable 10 shutouts. In fact, the U.S. scored 19 times while only surrendering a single goal in those 11 games, during the 1-1 draw against Jamaica on Nov. 17, 2004.

Even more importantly, nine of the matches have been World Cup Qualifiers. The USA is 7-0-2 in those contests, most recently running out 4-0 winners against Guatemala on March 29 earlier this year on Matchday 4 of the Semifinal Round of qualifying.