Mexico: Carlos Vela out of Brazil call-up
Real Sociedad forward Carlos Vela has been ruled out of consideration for El Tri's 2014 World Cup team, the Mexico Football Federation announced on Monday.
• Canales: Vela soap opera ends
The announcement was made Monday in Spain after federation officials met with Vela. According to the media release, Vela said he was not at 100 percent in his mental and emotional state for the World Cup.
Vela met with national selections director Hector Gonzalez Inarritu, sporting director Ricardo Pelaez and coach Miguel “El Piojo” Herrera. Herrera said Vela does not have the necessary level of commitment and would not be included in the call-up. "I am not seeing the commitment that we need, nor the desire and we have practically discarded him from the process," Herrera told ESPN's Raza Deportiva. Herrera, who is in Europe to meet with Mexico's European league players, said not having Vela on the squad does not interfere with his plans.
"He doesn't feel prepared for the process," Herrera said. "Now that we have qualified, he doesn't think he deserves to be there and I need players who can make a 100 percent commitment."
The 24-year-old striker has not played for the Mexico national team since March 29, 2011, for a friendly against Venezuela. Vela also reportedly turned down a call-up from former Mexico coach Jose Manuel de la Torre during CONCACAF qualifying in 2013.
In an open letter, Vela acknowledged that he had taken himself out of the running and said he felt that the players who had suffered through the difficult qualifying process were the ones who deserved to be on the final team.
"Only 23 players will go to Brazil. Most of these 23 have lived, enjoyed and suffered through the qualifying and it would not be fair on my part that one of them should be left off to make a space for me," Vela said. "Now Mexico is among the top 32 teams in the world. Let's not get distracted by the negatives. Let's simply dedicate ourselves to supporting El Tri with all of our enthusiasm.
"I want to thank all those who have come to visit and talk to me," he said. "But this moment belongs to those who Miguel (Herrera) has called on."
While Mexico's media outlets were critical of Vela and his decision, Atlanta Hawks forward Gustavo Ayon hinted that there might be more to the exchange with federation officials and Vela than what was said via press releases. He said via tweet: "I am with you Carlos Vela. Poor (federation) management takes advantage of our love for our country."
Estoy contigo @11carlosV los malos directivos de nuestro país abusan de nuestro amor al país.— Gustavo Ayon (@AyonGustavo) February 4, 2014