Mexico delayed 10 hrs ahead of Martinique clash

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- The Mexican national team endured a 10-hour delay in traveling from Denver to Charlotte ahead of Sunday's Gold Cup clash with Martinique, eventually getting to the team hotel at 5 a.m. on Friday due to a tire problem with the plane that was due to transport them.

El Tri was supposed to set off from Denver around 2 p.m. Mountain Time and arrive in Charlotte at 7 p.m. Eastern Time, confirmed the Mexican federation, but the technical problem with the charter plane left the team not knowing whether it would be staying an extra day in Colorado.

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The flight was then rescheduled for 9:30 p.m., using the same plane that had taken the Canadian and Cuban national teams from Denver to Charlotte earlier in the day.

The Mexico squad -- as well as the Martinique team, which was on the same plane -- eventually set off from Denver at 10:30 p.m. Mountain Time and landed just after 4 a.m. Eastern Time in Charlotte, with the players getting to the team hotel at 5 a.m.

Martinque arrived at its hotel in the city even later.

Mexico was set to train in Charlotte on Friday morning, but the session was shifted to 5 p.m. in the afternoon to allow the players to rest.

Mexico defeated Canada 3-1 on Wednesday to make it two wins from two matches in Group A and is almost guaranteed a spot in the quarterfinal, barring a heavy defeat to Martinique.

Midfielder Erick Gutierrez and forward Rodolfo Pizarro both underwent medical tests on Thursday to find out the extent of their injuries, although the results haven't as yet been released.

Gutierrez was forced off in the first half of the win over Canada on Wednesday with what looked like a right hamstring injury, while Pizarro has an ongoing complaint that has seen him not play any minutes so far in the tournament.