Sporting KC’s Pulido to join Mexican National Team for two friendlies in Europe
The Mexican Football Federation announced Tuesday that Pulido has been selected to the Mexico Men’s National Team, joining a 26-player squad assembled by head coach Gerardo “Tata” Martino for games at Wales on March 27 in Cardiff and against CONCACAF rival Costa Rica on March 30 in Wiener Neustadt, Austria.
Following the friendly matches, Pulido will adhere to mandated health and safety protocols in accordance with international travel before rejoining Sporting KC in April for the start of the 2021 MLS regular season.
Pulido tallied seven goals and five assists in 14 appearances across all competitions during his first MLS season with Sporting in 2020. His six goals and five assists in regular season play were both team highs, marking the first time since 2005 that a player has led Sporting in both goals and assists. Sporting went 8-2-1 and averaged 2.27 goals per match in the 11 regular season games that he started.
Last November, Pulido was one of three finalists for 2020 MLS Newcomer of the Year and was selected as Sporting’s Offensive Player of the Year. His contributions helped manager Peter Vermes’ side finish atop the Western Conference standings with a 12-6-3 record and 1.86 points per match, the highest clip in club history.
Pulido has recorded five goals in 14 career caps for Mexico, most recently featuring in El Tri’s 2-2 friendly draw against Algeria last October in the Netherlands. He has notably represented his country at the 2011 Copa America in Argentina and the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. The 30-year-old forward is one of four MLS players on Mexico’s roster, joining Rodolfo Pizarro of Inter Miami CF and LA Galaxy duo Efrain Alvarez and Jonathan dos Santos.
A native of Ciudad Victoria, Pulido has featured for Mexico at the U-20, U-23 and senior levels. He led El Tri to the 2011 Concacaf U-20 Championship title, scoring three goals at the tournament, before making five appearances at the 2011 FIFA U-20 World Cup in Colombia as Mexico finished in third place.