Discussion

Top 25 Mexican soccer players

Updated: February 19, 2013, 3:27 PM ET
By Eric Gomez and Tom Marshall

It's not an easy task to rank the best Mexican soccer players. There's no set formula, but proving yourself in Europe remains the biggest test for a player this side of the Atlantic. So it's no surprise that our top five is made up of players based in Spain or England.

Then there is the question of the younger players. Diego Reyes, Hector Herrera and Marco Fabian are all at the beginning of what should be great careers with the national team. They are all in the top 15, for now, but could swiftly move further up, or down, in the next 12 months.

Heading the field is Javier Hernandez. There will be debate as to whether his role for Manchester United warrants his being placed in the No. 1 spot, but he has remained consistent in scoring goals, has improved his all-around game and is the Mexican player making the most impact in games at the highest level. His goal-scoring record for the national team is also second-to-none.

There was some internal discussion over the merits of promoting in-form Real Sociedad forward Carlos Vela to the top spot after his sensational season in La Liga, but he's been consistent for only the past 12 months. The irony of it is that Vela would be much closer to dethroning Hernandez had he been making a difference with El Tri.

The players on the list also give an excellent representation of the positions where Mexico is strong and where it's weaker, something that our Brazil Board doesn't highlight. No right backs are represented on this list, while there are five center backs and six central midfielders. If you have disagreements, head to the comments section -- and remember that we'll update this list several times this year.

Here is our initial list of the Top 25 Mexican national-team-eligible players:

1
Javier Hernandez
AGE: 24
DOB: 6/1/88
CLUB (COUNTRY) Man U (England)
POS: F

Hernandez is the international reference point for El Tri. Sir Alex Ferguson regularly praises the striker, and Hernandez responds with goals. Be it in the Premier League, Champions League, FA Cup or League Cup, Chicharito knows where the net is. In the Premier League this season, he has an average of a goal every 77.5 minutes. There is also an argument that not playing every week for Manchester United means he is a lot fresher when he turns up for El Tri duty. His good form is vital for El Tri moving toward Brazil 2014.

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