USWNT Neighbor Watch: Mexico’s Cuellar, ‘We are on the right track’

After returning from the 2012 CONCACAF Women’s Under-20 Championship in Panama, where Mexico qualified for the 2012 FIFA Under-20 Women’s World Cup, Mexican Women’s National Team head coach Leonardo Cuellar, Mexico’s U-20 WNT head coach Roberto Medina, plus a handful of U-20 players, including senior national team goalkeeper Cecilia Santiago and U-20 team captain Nayeli Rangel, participated in a press conference. A video was posted (direct link, in MP4 format) on’s website and a text summary (in Spanish) was provided as well. Based on the summary, the press conference was rather uneventful, but did provide a few interesting quotes (translated to English using Google Translate as a starting point):

Leonardo Cuellar (Mexico’s WNT head coach):

“There are clear differences with respect to the United States’ program, which has about 10 million girls playing soccer in an organized manner, with an extensive program of talent identification, with a great culture for women’s sport, and it is also clear that Canada gives 60% of its budget to Football Women’s National Team and this is evident in how they develop.

But Mexico is making an extraordinary effort to stay close and have a chance to beat them both to keep climbing. This takes time and we are on the right track.”

Roberto Medina (Mexico’s U-20 WNT head coach), on the U-20 roster:

“We will continue observing players, of course, if we find someone who is at or better, then the goal is to integrate the collective idea of the group and their individual capacities are for the benefit of the team.”

Cuellar also mentioned that some of the U-20 players may have to attend summer school in order to make-up coursework.

Cuellar went on to say that May will be the month when there will be a larger concentration on U-20 WWC preparation. He also mentioned the possibility of taking the U-20 WNT to South America and Europe for test matches.

Cecilia Santiago also spoke briefly during the video, but her remarks were not in the text summary.

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