While the United States sweats the details of their potential berth in Russia, Mexico’s had theirs sewn up for some time.
The tension for El Tri has come off the pitch, where a 20-second, 7.1 earthquake shook Central Mexico in mid-September.
The team, often the focal point for the country’s passion, did it proud again on Friday, celebrating first responders with a prematch ceremony before a World Cup qualifier against Trinidad and Tobago.
The fans and players, led by intrepid captain Andres Guardado, stood in unison for the national anthem with fists raised in solidarity.
It was quite moving. See below: