USMNT vs. Mexico World Cup Qualifier Preview and Best Bet

USA’s forward Daryl Dike (R) shoots the ball as Jamaica’s defender Oniel Fisher attempts to block it. Andy Jacobsohn/AFP

The USMNT and Mexico will meet in Cincinnati for a crucial World Cup qualification clash on Friday night.

Mexico is top of the CONCACAF qualifying group after securing four wins and two draws from its first six games. The USA is three points behind Mexico in second place, but manager Greg Berhalter is under pressure after a recent 1-0 defeat to Panama.

He will be desperate for his team to secure a morale-boosting victory in this game. However, Mexico has welcomed several key players back from injury, so it will make life difficult for the USMNT at TQL Stadium.

USA vs. Mexico

Friday, November 12, 2021 – 09:10 PM EST at TQL Stadium


The USA ended a long winless streak against Mexico when it beat El Tri 3-2 in the CONCACAF Nations League final back in June. It was a pulsating game, with lots of chances at both ends of the pitch, and Berhalter’s men were rewarded for their bravery in the attack.

The teams renewed hostilities in the CONCACAF Gold Cup final in August. Mexico was the clear favorite, as most of the USMNT’s key players were unavailable for the tournament. However, the USA defense held firm in a 1-0 win, allowing the team to secure its second trophy of 2021.

Team News

Napoli winger Hirving Lozano suffered a bad injury in Mexico’s opening game of the Gold Cup, and the team badly missed his drive and creativity in attack. He is now back in business, while El Tri has also welcomed back star striker Raúl Jiménez, who was out for several months with a fractured skull.

Jiménez is scoring goals again for Wolves in the Premier League, and he will provide strong competition for Rogelio Funes Mori upfront. Throw in Henry Martín, Jesús Corona, and Orbélin Pineda, and Mexico looks stacked in the attack.

Jonathan Dos Santos #6 of Mexico advances the ball on goal against Honduras. Ralph Freso/Getty Images/AFP

Captain Andrés Guardado, Héctor Herrera of Atlético Madrid and Edson Álvarez of Ajax are all in line to start in midfield. Defender Néstor Araujo is suspended after receiving a red card in Mexico’s recent 2-0 win against El Salvador.

The USA will be without full-back Sergino Dest, as the Barcelona star is injured. Borussia Dortmund forward Gio Reyna also misses out.

The main cause for concern is the fitness of star player Christian Pulisic. He has only just returned to the Chelsea team following injury issues, and Blues manager Thomas Tuchel has asked Berhalter to use him sparingly.

Weston McKennie, Timothy Weah, Brenden Aaronson, Tyler Adams, Zack Steffen, and DeAndre Yedlin are the players from major European clubs in Berhalter’s squad, along with a wealth of MLS talent. There is no room for Darryl Dike and Josh Sargent, while John Brooks’ poor form has cost him a place.

Betting Odds

BetMGM makes Mexico the narrow favorite at +165. The USA is priced at +170, while the draw is +200, so it could be a very close game. Over 2.5 goals is +135, while under 2.5 goals is just -188 for this game.

The Pick

Both teams to score at +100 with BetMGM looks like a great option in this game. The USA and Mexico both have talented forwards and excellent playmakers, so we should see lots of chances. The last game between the teams was a tight, tense 1-0 win for the USMNT, but Mexico should be more dangerous in attack now that Lozano is back in the team.

The moneyline market looks too close to call. The USA dominates the recent head-to-heads, and it has a home advantage, but Mexico is in better form. The USA has more pace and energy, but Mexico has more experience, so they could cancel one another out. A small stake on the draw (tie) at +200 looks good, but the goals markets offer more value.

Soccer Pick: Both teams to Score (+100) at BetMGM