Mexico walked away with a 3-1 friendly victory over Ecuador Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, but star midfielder Luis Montes suffered a terrible and costly injury.
The 28-year-old, who’s made 12 appearances for Mexico’s national team, collided with Ecuador’s Segundo Castillo midway through the first half and snapped his right tibia and fibula. Writhing in pain and screaming on the pitch, Montes had just ended a nil-nil tie with his goal in the 33rd minute only to come up with a gruesome knock that dashes many of the hopes Mexico had heading into next month’s World Cup in Brazil.
Mexico may have also lost team captain Rafael Marquez to a right foot injury in a seperate minor incident. The center back or defensive midfielder has made 118 career appearances for his homeland since 1997. Marquez was taken to the hospital, but the extent of the injury is unknown.
Battling host country and favorite Brazil in Group A, along with dangerous teams like Croatia and Cameroon, the possible loss of two of its best players is an unfortunate turn for Mexico.
Castillo is likely to also miss the World Cup as he reportedly tore his ACL during the collision.
Montes normally plays for Club Leon of Mexico’s Liga MX, where he’s made 90 appearances and scored 15 goals over the last three years.