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Oct 29, 2013

Giovani dos Santos blasts El Tri

Too many coaching changes and an unclear explanation of roles on the pitch are the main reasons Villarreal forward Giovani dos Santos cites for El Tri's World Cup qualifying woes.

"Spain found a style of play that works to its benefit," dos Santos said Monday in an interview with El Pais.

"In Mexico, we have had a lot of coaches but we haven’t found it. The impose a system of play without caring about the position you play with on your club. Here, I play second striker and there right winger. I can’t have the same performance."

Dos Santos blasted the El Tri administration for its treatment of fellow La Liga player, Real Sociedad forward Carlos Vela.

"People are asking why Vela is not on the team," dos Santos said. "Here, he has prestige and he goes to Mexico for what? So they can trash him? And he is going to play under a system that is very different from Real. And those of us who are in Europe take all the blame."

Newly minted El Tri coach Miguel "Piojo" Herrera is in San Diego with the team for an Oct. 30 friendly vs. Finland as the team prepares for its intercontinental playoff vs. New Zealand Nov. 13 and 20. Herrera has said he may add two players active in Europe for the playoff, but has not revealed details. Vela has not played for the national team since March 29, 2011, for a friendly against Venezuela. Dos Santos, however, has been active in Mexico's qualifying effort this year throughout the coaching changes.

"Four coaches in one month tells you everything," he said. "We need a playing style and we need to know our roles on the pitch. The team doesn't know how it is supposed to play. Many of these players helped Mexico win gold in London (2012 Olympics)."

El Tri has qualified for five straight World Cups, last missing out in 1990, when the team was banned from qualifying for using ineligible players in a junior tournament. The last time Mexico participated in qualifying and did not reach the World Cup was 1982.

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