Mexico escaped their first Confederation Cups game with a draw, but El Tri needs to do better than that if they wish to advance to the next stage. They challenge New Zealand on June 21 at 2:00 PM ET in a match that no one should miss!
For a brief moment, it looked as if Mexico was going to open up the 2017 Confederations Cups in Russia with a loss. Yet, thanks to a Hector Moreno, 29, header at nearly the literal last minute, El Tri were able to tie Portugal and score themselves a point in the tournament. They’ll look to rack up three more when they battle New Zealand at the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi. The New Zealanders are stinging from getting blanked by the host country, so expect both sides to go toe-to-toe until the very last whistle is blown.
Mexico had to thank the new video assistant referee for helping them maintain their draw with Cristiano Ronaldo’s side. During the 21st minute, Cristiano, 32, connected a shot against the Mexican crossbar. Pepe, 34, was able to capitalize and bash the ball in, but a video review of the play saw that Pepe was offside. Thus, the goal was waved off and Mexico was still alive in the match. Javier Hernandez, 29, would even up the score in the first half, finding the equalizer to the goal from Portugal’s Ricardo Quaresma, 33. Cedric Soares, almost won the game for Portugal, scoring at the 86th minute. Yert, Hector came in in stoppage time and it all ended in a draw.
We played the European champions on equal terms, we generated chances but couldn’t finish them,” said Mexico’s manager Juan Carlos Osorio, 56, per ESPN. “We also managed to keep Cristiano Ronaldo in check. I think it was a very good result for Mexico.” It was a much better result than what happened to New Zealand. It was a comedy of errors for the Kiwis, who kicked off the game with an own goal. Michael Boxall, 28, accidentally kicked the ball into his own net as he failed to stop Denis Glushakov, 30, from scoring. Fedor Smolov, 27, would put the host country 2-0 over New Zealand by the end of the game.
Considering New Zealand faces Portugal in the final match of group play, this might be the only chance for the All Whites to score some major points. Mexico meets Russia in the final round of Group A action, and the top two teams will advance to the knockout stage. On the opposite side, Germany and Chile are dominating Group B. While New Zealand would love to avenge their 2-0 loss to Russia, Mexico are still haunted by their 7-0 loss in the 2016 Copa Americana. El Tri would love to erase that embarrassment from their record by defeating Chile in the Confederations cup, so expect Mexico to go all out in this game.
Soccer fans can enjoy every second of this match via Fox Sports official coverage (after entering in the appropriate login information.) CLICK HERE TO WATCH MEXICO VS. NEW ZEALAND IN THE CONFEDERATIONS CUP LIVE STREAM
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