Eriksson in the news

The Mexican national team has started its work with an eye on its upcoming matches: a Jan. 28 match in Oakland against Sweden, and a Feb. 11 World Cup qualifier against the United States in Columbus, Ohio.

For the first match, Sven Goran Eriksson has called on 23 local players. Among those he has called up are Atlas midfielder Lucas Ayala (originally from Argentina) and former Brazilians Leandro Augusto of Pumas, and former Argentine Vicente Matías Vuoso.

Although this isn't the final list for Oakland, Eriksson has begun to define the team that will be ready for the World Cup qualifier against the U.S.

What has gotten attention are comments by former U.S. national team player Alexis Lalas, now a commentator for ESPN. Lalas was quoted as saying he "hates, hates" the Mexican players. "That match drives me crazy and I hope we squash them and that their you-know-what freezes off in the cold night of Columbus."