SportsMexico entrenches and draws against the United States

Mexico entrenches and draws against the United States

Raúl Jiménez regrets a failure against the United States, at the Azteca stadium.ALFREDO STAR (AFP)

Whatever happened, Mexico had to show its teeth at the Azteca. Mexico’s hallowed streak of never losing at home to the United States was put at risk in a crucial game on the way to Qatar. El Tri de Tata Martino bet everything on defending well and attacking at the right time. The Americans had three times the opportunity to draw the deck and score a goal. The long-awaited Mexican hero, Guillermo Ochoa, stopped what was put in front of him to close the match with a scoreless draw. The Mexican offensive came out again with wet gunpowder, although the push was not lacking.



Ochoa, Johan Vásquez, Gerardo Daniel Arteaga Zamora, César Montes, Jorge Sánchez, Edson Álvarez, Héctor Herrera, Carlos Rodríguez (Erick Gutiérrez, min. 78), Raúl Jiménez, Jesús Corona (Ernesto Vega, min. 78) and Hirving Lozano



Zackary Steffen, Robinson, Miles Robinson, DeAndre Yedlin (Erik Palmer-Brown, min. 79), Walker Zimmerman, Tyler Adams (Aaron Long, min. 79), Kellyn Acosta, Yunus Musah, Ricardo Pepi (Theoson Siebatcheu, min. 59 ), Christian Pulisic (Jordan Morris, min. 83) and Tim Weah (Gio Reyna, min. 59)


Yellow cards Miles Robinson (min. 8), Edson Álvarez (min. 20), DeAndre Yedlin (min. 25), Tim Weah (min. 38) and Ernesto Vega (min. 89)

The North American classic brought with it the task of winning it in any way, regardless of the forms. Mexico was more concerned about knocking down its greatest rival in the area and that it already exceeds it in the number of soccer players who play in Europe. The United States handed the Mexican team three losses last year. Martino gave in to his lineup to give the youth of Johan Vásquez, Genoa central defender, a chance to seat the not so fine Néstor Araujo. In the center of the field he had to remedy the loss of Andrés Guardado, also lost during the tie, and gave Carlos Rodríguez a chance. But the initiative was from the US.

The United States team took the torch to attack the Mexican team from the start. The first aggressive moves were made by the Americans to try to make the night bitter. El Tri was under pressure every time he tried to get out with the ball. Nothing to do with the US team from two decades ago that went out to protect themselves against the colossal Azteca, looking for a miraculous goal. Ochoa had to defend Mexico twice in the first half: first he stretched to slap Musha’s shot and also when he stomached a shot from Christian Pulisic, the greatest jewel in American soccer. Very panic.

The Mexicans defended like an amalgam in every set piece play. The defense was up to 10 players to protect themselves because the greatest virtue of the USA has been to hit with strategy. In the attack, Raúl Jiménez and Hirving chucky Lozano tried to break the barricades. the named tecatito Corona, double reference of beers, had the clearest opportunity in front of the goal when he lost control and let go of the goal option.

There was anxiety in the Azteca stadium, warned that he should stop singing “puto”. The start of the second half was somewhat disconcerting when Pulisic crossed and the ball began to deflect in the direction of goal. There the foreman of the Mexican goal reemerged to frustrate him. Herrera, as if he lost gallons every time he plays in Mexico, he deflated, chucky Lozano ran aimlessly at goal and Martino was frustrated from the bench.

Jiménez, in the 70th minute, had another chance inside the area after a poor start by the US defense. The Wolves forward feinted and collided with defender Zimmerman. It was the second key opportunity. The American reply was also erratic when Pefok failed when Ochoa was already beaten. A couple of unlikely actions. Lozano still with gasoline shot in front of the goal and goalkeeper Steffen saved. The last minutes were for El Tri, who attacked from the sides. Alexis Vega, with an unbeatable position, preferred to look for the penalty and found a yellow card. The Mexican attack spiraled into failure before Americans who were already exhausted in Mexico City.

It will be enough for Mexico to beat Honduras this Sunday to close its pass to the World Cup against Qatar. So far, El Tri is third in the ranking below the US (22 points, the same as the Mexicans) and Canada (25).

You can follow EL PAÍS DEPORTES on Facebook and Twitteror sign up here to receive our weekly newsletter.