The Federación Mexicana de Fútbol (FMF) and Soccer United Marketing (SUM) announced today that the Mexican National Team will face the current Africa Cup of Nations champion, Nigeria, on Friday, May 31 (9:00 p.m. ET) at Reliant Stadium in Houston, TX. The match, presented by Allstate, will be the third of five games as part of Mexico’s annual U.S. tour, now in its 11th year.
Mexico has played 12 matches at Reliant Stadium since 2003, averaging nearly 60,000 fans per appearance. The last time El Tricolor featured against an African opponent at Reliant in 2010, Mexico defeated Angola 1-0 before a crowd of 70,099.
The upcoming May game against Nigeria will be crucial for Mexico head coach, Jose Manuel de la Torre, as it will be the team’s final preparation match before two June Hexagonal CONCACAF World Cup qualifying round matches. Following the qualifiers, Mexico – the reigning CONCACAF Gold Cup champions – will then head to Brazil to participate in the FIFA Confederations Cup. In Brazil, El Tricolor will face the home team, Italy and Japan in the group stage. Mexico will return to U.S. territory to defend their title in the bi-annual CONCACAF Gold Cup, which Mexico will inaugurate on July 7 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.
Nigeria was crowned champion of the 2013 edition of the Africa Cup of Nations after a 1-0 victory over Burkina Faso in the final, and will also travel to Brazil in July to participate in the FIFA Confederations Cup where they will face Spain, Uruguay and Tahiti in the group stage. Nigeria, currently leading Africa’s World Cup qualifying, has won the Africa Nations Cup on three occasions and also has participated in four World Cup tournaments. Mexico and Nigeria have met three times with a 1-0-2 record in favor of Mexico. The two teams last met in October of 2007 in an international friendly, with the match ending in a 2-2 tie at the Estadio Olimpico Benito Juarez in Chihuahua, Mexico.
Additional venues and opponents for the remaining 2013 Mexican National Team U.S. Tour matches will be announced at a later date, as well as media accreditation details for the upcoming matches.