Brazil and Mexico continued Group A action today playing to a 0 - 0 draw from Estadio Catelao in Fortaleza. Brazil, led by Neymar and company, had several opportunities but couldn't find the score sheet in a crowd pleasing match, that finished with a large ovation from many of the 50,000 on hand.
The Brazilians lacked fluidity and were without one of their regular starters in FC Zenit Saint Petersburg forward, Hulk, but were able to create a formidable challenge for Mexico's defense for most of the contest. Mexico goal keeper Guillermo Ochoa may have been the man of the match with his stout goal keeping which held Brazil scoreless. Ochoa made key save after save keeping Brazil's offense frustrated with one final save coming in stoppage time. While Brazil appeared dominant, Mexico held their own and played well enough to earn a point and keep pace with the Brazilians. Each team now has 4 points in their group with Croatia and Cameroon still looking for their first Group A points.
Brazil held the momentum for most of the match, passing the ball effectively and controlling the clock, but could not break through on any of their chances. "Phenomenal play" by their goalie Ochoa, as reported live by ESPN commentator Alexi Lalas, kept Brazil finding the score sheet and Mexico competitive throughout the match (ESPN live World Cup coverage).
Brazil were not always in the driver seat as Mexico controlled the momentum for a good portion of the second half, but did little to knock the Brazilians off their rhythm relying on several key saves by Ochoa. Brazil, who boasts the highest paid defensive line in all of soccer, were stout defensively for most of the afternoon, offering Mexico few opportunities to score. Mexico created several scoring opportunities, but the Brazilian defense was able to hold.
As a result of the 0 - 0 draw, Brazil and Mexico sit in first and second place in Group A respectively, with goal differential (Brazil +2 and Mexico +1) separating the two sides. Next up for Brazil is Cameroon on June 23rd, with Mexico playing last place Croatia.