Atlanta United coach Tata Martino in frame for Mexico post - sources

Atlanta United manager Gerardo "Tata" Martino has emerged as a serious candidate to take over as the Mexico head coach, sources have told ESPN, with Ricardo Ferretti officially ruled out of contention for the position on Tuesday.

ESPN Deportes' Hernan Pereyra and Jose Ramon Fernandez both stated Tuesday on air that Martino will be the next Mexico head coach, while BeIN Sports stated that only a verbal agreement had been reached.

Sources close to former Barcelona and Argentina coach Martino said Guillermo Cantu, the general secretary of the Mexican Football Federation (FMF), has held talks with him over the possibility of succeeding Juan Carlos Osorio, who quit in July.

The search for Juan Carlos Osorio's permanent replacement has included 15 interviews with candidates in person and nine over the phone, said FMF president Yon de Luisa last Friday, and a FMF statement on Tuesday indicated that the search for a new head coach is in its "final stage" and that the organization is "sure" the process will be concluded in the "near future."

On Tuesday, an FMF spokesperson told ESPN Deportes' Rene Tovar that no conversations would take place while Martino was still under contract with his MLS club. The club told ESPN on Wednesday that Martino would not speak until his media availability on Friday.

Martino's contract with Atlanta United expires at the end of the current MLS season but, with the team closing in on the Supporters Shield, the Argentine confirmed earlier this month that he has been offered a new deal with the club.

The option to renew the deal is Oct. 1, Martino has stated, according to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Martino's name has been linked to the United States job, as well as Colombia, and the Argentina Football Federation is also considering him as a candidate to become national teams coach, a job he previously held between 2014 and 2016.

Martino's duties could potentially include the management of the country's youth ranks on a four-year-deal until the 2022 World Cup.