Thursday, 23 November, 2017

Mexico Snatches Late 2-2 Draw against Portugal in FIFA Confederations Cup

Noah Ferguson | 20 June, 2017, 19:39

However, with two teams qualifying for the semi-finals from the four-team pool and Russian Federation up next, Ronaldo is confident the European champions can quickly improve their fortunes.

Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio: "We played the European champions on equal terms, we generated chances but couldn't finish them". Despite the fact that El Tri had more possession in the draw, Portugal was able to capitalize on Mexico's porous backline with more shots and opportunities in the attack.

"For us it is very important to make people in the country fall in love with the national team", said Smolov.

Ronaldo raced through and, although unable to get a shot away himself, picked out Quaresma at the far post, and the Besiktas winger wrong-footed Ochoa and slotted in from close range. "Even if it is the right decision, this has an impact on players' emotions and feelings".

- These sides have met six times previously with Mexico winning on five occasions and New Zealand just once.

Mexico's last competitive loss came nine games and exactly one year ago when Chile hammered them 7-0 in the Centenary Copa America.

Mexico: Ochoa 6, Salcedo 5, Moreno 7, Diego Reyes 6, Layún 6, Guardado 6, Herrera 6, J. Dos Santos 6, Vela 7, Chicharito 7, Jiménez 6.

The Portuguese did not hold this point in mind, and quickly opened the scoring.

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The mural is in a gated private courtyard, and fans and the media have not been allowed inside to view it. Players and hotel guests can see it perfectly because numerous rooms overlook the courtyard. While Portugal started strong, they dropped off in the second half. Osorio went to the bench in the 79th minute and brought on.

Cedric Soares looked to have given the European champions the three points with a goal in the 86th, but newly-signed AS Roma defender Hector Moreno scored off a corner to rescue a point for the CONCACAF representatives. I try to listen to him and he tries to help me as best he can.

"The team continue to believe in qualification, we have great possibilities, because there are still two games left".

Even so, not putting Lozano in the game was a unusual choice from a manager who nearly always looks for a win.

Dos Santos was energetic, aggressive and dynamic in the midfield.

The coach should get the benefit of the doubt, as his in-match changes generally have worked for Mexico. The biggest of those matches were part of the World Cup playoff tie in 2013 (Mexico winning 5-1 at home and 4-2 in Wellington), while the latest was a 2-1 result in Nashville, Tennessee in October a year ago.

And when El Tri went behind, it was hard not to think of the way things had gone so very wrong in Santa Clara, California, 365 days ago against Chile.

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