Mexico once again had to come from behind, but they ultimately beat Russia 2-1 in their last group stage game. The victory gives El Tri a spot in the Confederations Cup semifinals while eliminating the hosts.
Mexico controlled possession in the opening stanza, but Russia looked dangerous when they did have the ball. The hosts had two penalty shouts, one which went to VAR, and then, in the 25th minute, they took the lead. Alexandr Erokhin whiffed on his attempted shot but was able to keep control of the ball and send it over to Aleksandr Samedov, who made it 1-0.
Mexico will wrap up their participation in the group stage of the 2017 Confederations Cup this Saturday when they take on the hosts, Russia.
Mexico and Russia are both in the running to advance to the knockout rounds; this game is winner-takes-all, although El Tri would also advance with a draw. In the unlikely scenario that Portugal loses to New Zealand, then Mexico could advance even with a loss.
Russia is looking to avoid becoming the first host to fail to qualify for the knockout rounds since South Korea in 2001, while Mexico would be quite happy to play spoiler to their hosts.
It was not nearly as easy or as straightforward as Mexico was expecting, but in the end El Tri rallied for a 2-1 victory over New Zealand.
There were surprises both on and off the field, with the All Whites taking a shock lead and Mexico fans in the stands largely refraining from the infamous “eh p*to” chant after FIFA’s latest warning, drawing praise from the national team’s official Twitter account.
APPLAUSE for the fans who DIDN’T shout at the @NZ_Football goalkeeper. True #Incondicionales!
There was no praise, however, for the play on the field. Juan Carlos Osorio made no fewer than eight changes to the starting XI that drew 2-2 with Portugal on Sunday, and Mexico looked rather disjointed in the opening half. New Zealand had several chances to take the lead, beginning with a dangerous header in the 20th minute that Alfredo Talavera snagged right on the line.
The second round of Group A games will be played this Wednesday, with Mexico facing New Zealand and the hosts Russia taking on Portugal.
New Zealand is by far the weakest team in the group and Mexico will expect a straightforward victory here. After drawing with Portugal in their opening game, a win would put El Tri in a very good position before their final game against Russia.
In their 2017 Confederations Cup debut, Mexico scored a stoppage-time goal to tie Portugal 2-2. El Tri twice came from behind to tie the game, leaving Mexico and Portugal to share the spoils in this Group A match.
After a few minutes of feeling each other out, both teams went on the attack. It was Portugal who had the ball in the back of the net first, but that would-be goal was disallowed thanks to the new video assistance referee technology.
In the 19th minute, Portugal won a free kick, which Cristiano Ronaldo sent into the wall. He collected the rebound and hit the bar; that rebound was sent back into the box yet again and nodded in by Pepe; however, VAR ruled Pepe was offside from the initial ball in.
Mexico’s 2017 Confederations Cup campaign gets underway this Sunday with a Group A match-up against Portugal. Their group mates – hosts Russia and New Zealand – will play the first game of the tournament this Saturday.
Portugal with star Cristiano Ronaldo are among the favorites to make a run in the Cup, but Mexico will look to derail the Europeans with a positive result in this one.
Pumas UNAM earned an emphatic 8-1 victory over W Connection to book their spot in the knockout rounds of the 2016-17 CONCACAF Champions League. Eduardo Herrera, Jesús Gallardo, and Fidel Martínez all scored braces in the rout as Pumas topped Group A.
Saúl Berjón opened the scoring in the 16th minute when he finished off a cross from Pablo Barrera at the far post. The universitarios had looked dominant up to that point and the goal only confirmed it.
The 2016-17 CONCACAF Champions League group stage wraps up this week with three of Mexico’s four entrants in action. None of the three have mathematically guaranteed a spot in the knockout rounds, but all are very much in the running.
First up is Tigres UANL, who will host Herediano on Tuesday in Group G. Tigres are two points ahead of the Costa Ricans and need just a draw to guarantee advancement, while Herediano must win to move on.
Honduras Progreso kept their hopes of advancement alive with a come-from-behind 2-1 victory over Pumas UNAM. The loss ends the universitarios’ unbeaten run in the 2016-17 CONCACAF Champions League but keeps them atop Group A nevertheless.
Tonight’s game was a must-win for the hosts, and Progreso came out looking to control the ball and the match. However, it was the visitors who took the lead, with Alfonso Nieto scoring on the half-volley to make it 0-1 in the 27th minute.
In the final match of the fourth round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying, Mexico and Honduras played out a goalless draw. El Tri was already assured of a spot in the Hex, while the draw guaranteed Honduras’s own ticket to the next round.
Mexico came into this game with five wins out of five in qualifying and first place in the group long since locked up. Nevertheless, after poor performances in international competitions this summer as well as an unconvincing showing against El Salvador in qualifying last Friday, discontent was building among the fans in the Azteca.