Mexico started the year off with a win as they beat Bosnia-Herzegovina 1-0 in an international friendly. The largely domestic-based roster earned the win by the minimum difference thanks to Hugo Ayala’s first goal for El Tri in the second half.
Bosnia was also testing young players, many of whom were inexperienced internationally, and Mexico looked the better side from the beginning. They were wasteful with their chances, however, with Giovani dos Santos and Carlos Vela both failing to capitalize on early opportunities.
Juan Carlos Osorio made four halftime substitutions as he looked to give Mexico more of an edge in the final third. Jonathan dos Santos and Javier Aquino added another dimension to Mexico’s attack, but the breakthrough still wouldn’t come.
Then, in the 65th minute, a set piece gave El Tri the lead. Hugo Ayala out-jumped his marker to head the ball home and make it 1-0 for Mexico.
Mexico comfortably held on to the lead, with Bosnia not doing much to threaten Rodolfo Cota’s goal. They could have gone down to 10 men in the 61st minute but referee Jair Marrufo opted to give Dino Besirovic just a yellow after a bad foul. They did finish the game with 10, though, as Almir Bekic picked up his second yellow of the night in the 83rd minute.
Also of note was Jonthan González’s debut for El Tri as a second-half sub after the dual national made the switch from the United States earlier this year.
Mexico: Rodolfo Cota, Oswaldo Alanís (Néstor Araujo 45′), Hugo Ayala, Jesús Gallardo, Luis Rodriguez, Jesús Molina (Jorge Hernández 45′), Carlos Vela, Elías Hernández (Jonathan González 57′), Henry Martín (Rodolfo Pizarro 73′), Orbelín Pineda (Jonathan dos Santos 45′), Giovani dos Santos (Javier Aquino 45′).
Bosnia: Ibrahim Sehic (Kenan Piric 45′), Haris Medunjanin, Daniel Graovac, Almir Bekic, Darko Todorovic, Tomislav Tomic (Dino Besirovic 45′), Elvis Saric (Adnan Secerovic 75′), Stjepan Loncar, Mersudin Ahmetovic (Elvir Koljic 73′), Luka Menalo (Marijan Cavar 67′), Goran Zakaric (Ognjen Todorovic 64′).