Germany doesn't have a Messi, Neymar or Ronaldo - Mexico's Carlos Salcedo
MOSCOW -- Mexico defender Carlos Salcedo believes El Tri has earned respect in world football and feels there is no reason the CONCACAF nation can't defeat Germany on Sunday in its World Cup opener.
Eintracht Frankfurt's Salcedo was injured for the 4-1 loss to Germany at the semifinal stage of the Confederations Cup last summer and is adamant that the world champions are far from unbeatable.
"I believe this team has earned respect and that the team is ready to do great things," said Salcedo in a news conference at the team's training camp on Thursday. "Nobody is unbeatable and there are only three players, [Lionel] Messi, Cristiano [Ronaldo] and Neymar who can make two or three goals on their own.
"We've earned respect, but now we have to show it on the pitch," said the 24-year-old. "The first test comes next Sunday."
Salcedo says Mexico can take the game to the heavily-favored Germans, but must be intelligent in how it defends.
"I believe that you can go toe-to-toe with in an intelligent way, knowing how to approach a game depending on the strengths and weaknesses, which every team has, we've seen during these weeks," said Salcedo. "I believe that the team has understood, has worked with the coach on the pitch and I don't see why we can't beat Germany on Sunday."
Salcedo is set to play a key role for El Tri at the World Cup with defenders Diego Reyes and Nestor Araujo both out of the squad with injuries.
Coach Juan Carlos Osorio has played Salcedo both as a right-back and a center-back.
Tom Marshall covers Liga MX and the Mexican national team for ESPN FC. Twitter: @MexicoWorldCup.