Tension, concern and boos closed the chapter of the Concacaf Classic, after the goalless draw between Mexico and the United States, in the last match between the two at the Octagonal towards the Qatar 2022 World Cup.
Around 47,000 fans witnessed the end of the three-game losing streak that Mexico was dragging against the team led by Gregg Berhalther and the house is still undefeated in official duels against the stars and stripes.
Despite being a game on the edge of the seat due to the constant scoring opportunities between both sides, the end point was semi-bitter, at least, for the Mexican fans, who reappeared with the homophobic cry and the “Out Tata”. Frustration, because it was expected that the locality and the loss of American players due to injury, would weigh on the night to separate from the United States in the table and that the following two games against Honduras and El Salvador would find in a victory, the spirit and the inertia so that they were already a procedure.
Gerardo Martino, Edson Álvarez and Alexis Vega left with a yellow card. Mexico’s rivals were speed, the overflow of the American defense and set pieces. The starting men who stayed until the end: Raúl Jiménez and Hirving Lozano. Tata showed a lot of communication with the Napoli player during the match.
There were two chapters that had extra time, but it was not a factor in the equation to cause a winner. The Argentine coach turned to the bench at minute 79, to make his changes and opted for Erick Gutiérrez and Alexis Vega, to rest Tecatito Corona and Carlos Rodríguez.
The first half could have calmed down the nerves of the fans who, until halftime, responded to the local sound’s proposal to shout ‘Mexico’, turn on the light on their cell phones, dance, do the ‘wave’ in the marketing efforts of the Mexican Soccer Federation for expressing to the world and to FIFA, a family atmosphere.
In the first 47 minutes, he did not lack scoring opportunities, warnings, yellow cards, players knocked down and medical assistance. Mexico found in the Tecatito Corona the key in the midfield to open plays for the forwards and together with Jiménez and Lozano they had most of the opportunities.
On this occasion, Tata Martino gave his first opportunity in the starting lineup to Johan Vázquez, who had previously been called up, but always watched the games from the bench.
Christian Pulisic and goalkeeper Memo Ochoa had some of the best one-on-one duels. The Mexican saved at least three shots and the Chelsea player ceased to be a threat when he came off the bench in the second half.
Johan Vázquez, José Eduardo Sánchez and César Montes did not leave without feeling the frustration of not being able to score against goalkeeper Zack Steffen. Mexico needs 4 points out of a possible 6 to take the plane to Qatar. Honduras and El Salvador sail at the bottom of the table, basically without oxygen for a World Cup.
The United States keeps alive its hope of not being left out of a World Cup as it happened in 2018; their next rivals will be Panama and Costa Rica.
“Fundamentally, playing with this level of effort and competing well against a very strong rival, we are once again a reliable National Team, we maintained this situation for two years and from then on we decreased in the way of controlling the matches, of competing well. against the rivals, not because they surpassed us, but because we even lost the dynamic, when the rivals get behind us as has happened in the last games at the Azteca”, Tata said in a conference.
While on Sunday, Mexico will be in Honduras and on Wednesday it receives Salvadorans at the Azteca. Costa Rica will wake up this Friday in fourth place in the table, replacing Panama.
MATCHDAY 12, RESULTS.
Pos. / Team / Points
1 / Canada / 25
2 / United States / 22
3 / Mexico/ 22
4 / Costa Rica / 19
5 / Panama / 18
6 / El Salvador / 10
7 / Jamaica / 8
8 / Honduras / 4
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