International Preview: Alan Pulido and Mexico to face Honduras on Saturday in Atlanta

Mexico vs. Honduras
International Friendly
Saturday, June 12, 2021 | 6:30 p.m. CT
Mercedes-Benz Stadium | Atlanta, Georgia

Broadcast Schedule:
TV | Univision, TUDN
Stream | TUDN.com

Sporting Kansas City striker Alan Pulido will conclude his two-week stint with the Mexico Men's National Team on Saturday night when El Tri face Concacaf rivals Honduras in a friendly at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta. The match will be shown live in Spanish on Univision, TUDN and TUDN.com.

Pulido was an unused substitute on Sunday as Mexico took a 3-2 extra-time loss to the United States in an epic Concacaf Nations League Final in Denver. Three days earlier, the talented forward came off the bench as a second-half substitute and buried his penalty kick to help El Tri to a semifinal shootout win over Costa Rica following 90 minutes of scoreless action.

Although the Concacaf Nations League is in the rearview mirror, Mexico will use Saturday's clash as a valuable tune-up ahead of the 2021 Concacaf Gold Cup in July. El Tri have won two of the last three Gold Cup titles and four of the last six dating back to 2009. Head coach Gerardo "Tata" Martino's men are also looking to round into form ahead of 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifying, which ramps up in earnest in September, while a Mexican U-24 squad is also slated to compete at the Summer Olympics beginning July 21 in Japan.

The 30-year-old Pulido is part of a 24-man roster for Saturday's friendly, joining talented attackers such as Jesus Corona of FC Porto and Hirving Lozano of Napoli. With LA Galaxy's Jonathan dos Santos and Inter Miami CF's Rodolfo Pizarro dropping from the squad, Pulido will be Mexico's lone MLS representative this weekend.

Sitting 11th in the latest FIFA world rankings, Mexico will meet a 67th-ranked Honduras outfit that finished third in the inaugural Concacaf Nations League. Los Catrachos suffered a last-gasp 1-0 loss to the United States in the semifinals before bouncing back in the third-place match, edging Costa Rica on penalties after an exciting 2-2 draw. Head coach Fabian Coito's roster features three MLS players in Bryan Acosta of FC Dallas and Houston Dynamo duo Boniek Garcia and Maynor Figueroa—the latter of whom is Honduras' most-capped player with 167 appearances.

A 2014 FIFA World Cup veteran, Pulido has five goals in 15 appearances for Mexico and is seeking his first El Tri goal since providing the decisive tally in a 1-0 win over Iceland in February 2017. He has joined Mexico in a rich vein of form, having led MLS during the month of May with five goals and six combined goals and assists. Sporting Kansas City's record signing has posted four goals and an assist during the club's current three-game winning streak.

Following Saturday's match, Pulido will rejoin Sporting ahead of their road trip to the Portland Timbers on June 19.

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