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Mexico to prepare for World Cup with U.S. tour

Mexico's World Cup team will play a series of six friendlies in the United States, including a March 3 date at the Rose Bowl with New Zealand, according to Nestor de la Torre, president of the Mexican soccer federation.

"We have two objectives with these games," De la Torre said in a conference call this morning with reporters. "To observe [our players] and to prepare."

The tour, which had been rumored for months, will begin Feb. 24 at San Francisco's Candlestick Park with a match against Bolivia and conclude May 13 in Houston's Reliant Stadium against an opponent still to be determined. In between, El Tri will play Iceland on March 24 in Charlotte, N.C., Ecuador on May 7 at the new $1.6-million Meadowlands in New Jersey, and Senegal on May 10 at Soldier Field in Chicago.

Mexico will then play a farewell match in Mexico City's Estadio Azteca against World Cup qualifier Chile on May 16 before concluding its preparations for the tournament with additional games in Europe, a rumored match with the Netherlands and an early-June match against Italy, according to the Italian news agency ANSA.

-- Kevin Baxter

 
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