Thursday, 22 June 2017

Confederations Cup: Mexico 2-1 New Zealand

In a fiery Confederations Cup clash on Wednesday, Mexico came from behind to beat New Zealand 2-1.  Players from both sides became involved in an unseemly melee deep into injury-time after Mexico skipper Diego Reyes dragged back Michael Boxall, who then lunged at substitute Hector Herrera.


Gambian referee Bakary Gassama reviewed the incident before remarkably issuing only yellow cards to all three players involved in the initial clashes, but no more. The Mexicans, who saw Ryan Thomas denied an 85th-minute equaliser by the woodwork, survived a major scare after Chris Wood had fired the Kiwis into a half-time lead and then squandered a series of further chances before Raul Jimenez and Peralta spared their blushes.
It was Wood who finally broke the deadlock three minutes before the break when midfielder Clayton Lewis turned the ball around the corner to put him through on goal, and he finished expertly to give New Zealand a shock lead.
Osorio sent on midfielder Herrera at the break and his side perhaps should have been level within four minutes when Javier Aquino's shot from a tight angle was well saved by Stefan Marinovic and Giovani blazed over from the loose ball. They finally got their noses in front with 18 minutes remaining when Peralta swept home Aquino's astute pull-back, although substitute Rafael Marquez was fortunate to escape a red card for an ugly challenge seconds later.
Mexico's luck held five minutes from time when Thomas' piledriver crashed against the bar and ran to safety before the red mists descended.

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