SAF Puts the Kibosh on Chicharito's Olympic Odyssey

In a somewhat surprising, yet understandable announcement yesterday, FEMEXFUT announced that Javier Hernandez will not be part of Mexico's Olympic plans. The decision came all the way from the top, as in Sir Alex Ferguson, who decided that Chicharo the Younger would be better served not having to participate in a summer tournament for the 3rd year in a row.

Given Hernandez' recent form, you can't really blame Sir Alex for protecting his player. Since Chicharito was over the U23 age limit, the Manchester United coach had zero obligation to release him. Besides, anyone who has been watching Hernandez closely sees a player whose trademark bursts of acceleration are not what they normally are. Chicharito is gassed, and his coach knows it.

"He’s found the second year more difficult, but a lot of that is down to not having a summer break for three years and playing every summer for his country. Next year he will be fine as we have agreed with the Mexican Football Association that he is going to get the requisite rest that he needs to perform in the Premier League." Sir Alex told the club's website. So instead of bouncing around England this summer, Chicharito can bounce around the Costa Alegre just west of Guadalajara. I hear they have excellent restaurants in Puerto Vallarta, and El Tamarindo Golf Course is supposed to be the Mexican Pebble Beach.

The news was not good for Femexfut, and worse for its television partners, who would have surely leveraged the inclusion of Mexico's most famous athlete in the Olympics into some terrific gains on the ad revenue side. When FMF executive, Hector Gonzalez Iñarritu, said that they would be willing to not call up Hernandez for Mexico's upcoming qualifiers so that he could play in the Olympics, it made me wonder for whose interests FMF was really advocating. The Olympics are nice, but the World Cup is not something that should ever be trifled with.

It would have been nice to see Chicharito in England this summer. If he was going to play, I also fully expected him to carry the flag in the Opening Ceremonies as well. Needless to say, Mexico's attack has suffered a big set-back. But as the door closes on Chicharito, it opens for another striker. Aldo de Nigris has bounced back well from his injury setbacks and would be an able replacement. But I'll go with Oribe Peralta, the man who has etched his name in the scorebook over 30 times this year should be rewarded accordingly.