Group A began its second round with Mexico clashing against Brazil! A match that many thought was pretty one sided favoring Brazil. But was it the predicted outcome many believed it would be?
With Brazil the clear favorite, Mexico needed to step up their game and not lose any points that could determine their position in the group. Since both teams already had three points under their belt after beginning the World Cup by defeating their opponents in the first round, it was anybody’s game. A win in this round would only guarantee a pass to the next round for either team.
Unlike many expected, the match ended in tie, which awarded both teams one point!! Mexico’s goal keeper, Guillermo “Memo” Ochoa was labeled as the hero of the match after an incredible performance. Before the World Cup many fans questioned if Mexico’s coach Miguel Herrera would make him the starting goalie, or if he would substitute for their now second goalie Jesus Corona.
One of the clearest options of goals for Brazil came at the 26th minute, when Neymar’s header seemed to be headed inside of the net, which Ochoa quickly denied. But that was not the only save, he also denied Paulinho a shot just before half-time. After half-time he denied Neymar a close range shot and a header by Thiago Silva close to the end of the match that could have given the home team the three points.
As for Mexico, they took complete control of the first half, in which seemed that they were close to achieving the desired goal. Julio Cesar denied any options of goal. Close to the end of the match Andres Guardado’s shot hit the crossbar and Raul Jimenez also attempted a shot, but the ball landed in Julio Cesar’s hands. Both teams fought long and hard, the tie mirrored what happed in the field.
At the end of the match the press was able to ask Memo Ochoa about the game in which he said “it was the match of his life!”
His coach Miguel Herrera labeled him as the hero of the match! He was not the only one who praised Memo’s performance, Brazilian coach, Luiz Felipe Scolari said “we need to give credit to the goalkeeper. He had a great day and that kept us from winning the match. He had some spectacular saves and was the best player of the match.”
Ochoa’s efforts were also recognized on twitter which created various memes labeling him as the savior of Mexico, even Colombian striker Radamel Falcao tweeted “impressive game by @yosoy8a the man of the match.”
This match solidified that this Mexican team is a force to recognize and that they are not going to give up and fight until the end. It also showed that Brazil, a huge contender to win this year’s World Cup can be stopped.
The standings in Group A are as follow: Brazil 4, Mexico 4, Croatia and Cameroon both lost their initial matches and will face each other in this round later on Wednesday.
As for their last group matches, Brazil will face Cameroon and Mexico will face Croatia which will define who will advance to the next round and in what position.
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