Mexico beat Senegal in a friendly 2-0 Wednesday night at Marlins Park, in Miami
Despite both teams not playing with their strongest lineups, both sides and players were determined to show their worth to their coaches. The Mexico side was made up exclusively of Liga MX based players, as the European clubs did not have to release players. This match was not on a FIFA international date.
An Unentertaining First Half
Mexico started the first half on the front foot, but bad fouls and lazy passing allowed Senegal to grow more and more into the match. The best chance in the first half came on a Senegalese two on one in the twenty-eight minute, when Jose Corona saved a sure goal as he dove across the goal line and hit the ball away. Senegal continued to try and use their speed, breaking quickly on the counter attack and using long balls from the backline to break open the Mexican backline.
El Tri held most of the possession in the first half, but despite all the time they had on the ball they could not convert in the final third. The best chances at goal for Mexico came from the dead ball. First, a Jesus Zavala header at the edge of the six-yard box went sky high over the goal. Their second chance of the half came of a free kick on the top of the box, but Jesus Duenas could not get the ball to dip down, and the shot went high over the crossbar.
Talent Wins Out
Despite dominating the first fifteen minutes of the first half, Mexico could not deliver in the final third. It was Senegal who had the first real chance of the half when Ibrahima Diop dribbled past the Mexican backline but shanked his shot wide.
Mexico finally got their goal in the seventy-third minute, when Jesus Duenas headed home a great cross by newly substituted Candido Ramirez from the right flank.
Despite the hard work from the Senegalese, the Mexican talent was the deciding factor in the match. El Tri put the game to bed in the eighty-seventh minute, when Rodolfo Pizarro headed home a beautiful Lozano cross to double the Mexican’s lead.
Pizarro had a chance minutes later for a third Mexican goal but his shot from the top of the six-yard box went just wide of the post.
There were fifteen thousand five hundred and eighty-eight people in attendance at Marlins Park, the most ever for a soccer game at the home of the Miami Marlins.
A Warmup Match
For Mexico and coach Juan Carlos Osorio, this match stands as a warmup for their World Cup qualifier next month in Canada against a rejuvenated Canadian national team.
Mexico have gone 270 minutes under the management of Osorio without conceding a goal, although they have not played quality opposition as of late.