Mexico and Brazil drew nil-nil in Fortaleza, Brazil during their respective second game of the World Cup.
Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa helped keep the home team from scoring and earned Mexico a valuable point.
MEXICO: Ochoa, Aguilar, ‘Maza’, Márquez, Moreno, Layún, Vázquez, Herrera, Guardado, Oribe, Dos Santos
BRAZIL: J.Cesar, Alves, T Silva, David Luiz, Marcelo, Paulinho, Luis Gustavo, Ramires, Oscar, Neymar, Fred
Brazil started the game attacking Mexico’s lines.
In the 11th minute Fred had an opportunity for Brazil, but he was called offsides.
In the 23rd minute, Hector Herrera unleashed a shot that Julio Cesar managed to palm over the crossbar.
It was then Guillermo Ochoa’s turn to shine. In the 27th minute Neymar headed the ball near the post, but Ochoa flew to stop the shot.
Ochoa again saved the Mexican team in the 44th minute. He rushed out at two Brazilian players and blocked the shot.
In the 54th minute “Gallito” Vazquez took a shot that just passed the goal. Herrera followed two minutes later with a long distance shot, but the ball didn’t dip down in time to go into goal.
Again, Ochoa showed up in the 68th minute. Neymar received a ball from Bernard, controlled and unleashed a shot but Ochoa was there to block.
Once again, Ochoa showed up for Mexico in the 85th minute and blocked a header from Thiaga Silva.
One of Mexico’s most awaited games ended with a well deserved point. The long distance shots by several of the Mexican players gave glimpses of a Mexican win. They were close, but missed by inches.
The opening 15 minutes of the second half showed Mexican dominance and it seemed like the opportunity was coming. Unfortunately that period of time wasn’t enough, but the work was there.
Ochoa’s work was of course the one that will be highlighted. He had spectacular stops and blocks that kept Mexico in the game. The defense did falter at times, and it was luck that Ochoa was that assured in his position. He’s been waiting a very long time for that opportunity and today he blew the competition away. Teams across Europe who did not know that his contract with Ajaccio will be up in a few days surely know now.
Another player who had a great performance was “Gallito” Vazquez. He distributed the ball quite well and was an important part o the attacks.
Miguel Herrera was interviewed after the game and was asked if it felt like a win. He said that it felt like a draw. Though the team is receiving many accolades for getting a point, Herrera has the right attitude. The team definitely had the opportunity to get all three points. Brazil showed weakness against Croatia and again against Mexico that it’s believable that three points were possible for Mexico.
Unfortunately, those two goals that were annulled against Cameroon seem pretty important right now. Of course, it all depends on how Group B fares, but if Mexico ends second and the Netherlands first as it seems to be projected in Group B it might be quite troublesome. There is certainly still an opportunity for Mexico to end at the top of the group. If Croatia fail to get all three points from Cameroon, then their World Cup dreams may be over and the final game against Mexico may not be of much importance anymore. The situation is similar for Cameroon. The last game will determine quite a lot, but there’s no reason why Mexico should settle with just passing and not the first place of Group A.
Mexico’s last game in the group stage is against Croatia on Monday, June 23 in Recife.