How they got to the 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup: Mexico vs Italy
Although Mexico failed to win the CONCACAF under-20 championship - a tournament they have dominated over the years - El Tri nonetheless secured a spot at the upcoming FIFA under-20 World Cup after finishing as runners-up to the United States. Ironically, it was a brace from a player who is still eligible to play for the Mexican senior side - Alex Mendez - that denied Mexico a chance to clinch the CONCACAF title, and depending on how things pan out, Mexico and the Stars and Stripes could end up locking horns at some point in this competition.
Meanwhile, Italy, who finished in third place at the 2017 edition, booked their ticket to this competition after finishing as runners-up to Portugal in the 2018 UEFA under-19 championship. With key striker Moise Kean not taking part in this tournament, much of the goal-scoring responsibilities will fall to Gianluca Scamacca, who was the second-highest goal-scorer for Italy at last year's EURO tournament, and has netted five times in seven appearances for the under-20 side.
Mexico vs Italy: History at the FIFA U-20 World Cup
To date, Italy's best ever finish at a u-20 World Cup was their third placed finish at the 2017 edition. It was an impressive achievement for the Azzurrini considering that they had not been able to qualify for a tournament since 2009. This will be their seventh appearance overall, and they will be hoping to go one step further than 2017 and lift the trophy for the first time.
Of course, that won't be easy. Upcoming opponents Mexico are veterans of this competition, having made 15 prior appearances to the upcoming edition in Poland. Yet despite this, and being serial winners of the CONCACAF under-20 championship, El Tri have yet to get their hands on the title. Their best ever result was a runners-up medal at the first ever competition in 1977, and in recent times (2011) they were just a game away from the final, but had to settle for third place.
Mexico vs Italy: Facts and stats
- This will be Mexico's 16th appearance at the FIFA U-20 World Cup
- El Tri are joint-tied with Argentina and the United States for the team with the most appearances at this competition
- Italy will be making their seventh appearance at the under-20 World Cup
- Mexico and Italy will be meeting for the first time at the under-20 level this Thursday
Where to watch Mexico vs Italy on May 23, 2019
In the USA, tune in to Mexico vs Italy on Fox Sports 2, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo, and Telemundo.
Viewers in Italy can catch the Azzurrini in action on Sky Sport Uno, RAI Play, SKY Go Italia, and RAI Sport 1.
Fans based in Mexico should tune in to TDN, Televisa Deportes En Vivo, Azteca 7, Canal 5 Televisa, and UnivisionTDN to follow the match.
Live elsewhere? Here are your options to watch Mexico vs Italy:
Mexico U20 vs Italy U20 Broadcast Information
Stadium: Stadion Miejski (Gdynia)
Canada: TSN GO, TSN2
India: SONY TEN 2 HD, SONY TEN 2
Indonesia: Super Soccer TV
Italy: Sky Sport Uno, RAI Play, SKY Go Italia, RAI Sport 1
Malaysia: Astro Go, Astro SuperSport 2
Mexico: TDN, Azteca 7, Canal 5 Televisa, Televisa Deportes En Vivo, UnivisionTDN, Azteca Deportes En Vivo
Nigeria: SuperSport 7 Africa, SuperSport 7 Nigeria
Turkey: TRT Spor
United States: Telemundo, Telemundo Deportes En Vivo, fuboTV, Fox Sports 2, FOX Sports GO