The Mexican national team defeated Ecuador 3-1 at Cowboy Stadium in the first of their three farewell tour games in the United States prior to travelling to participate in the FIFA Brazil 2014 World Cup. The victory was costly for the Mexicans as they lost midfielder and play maker Luis Montes due to a fractured tibia after a collision with Segundo Castillo.
The game started with both teams attempting to take control of the pitch. For 30 minutes both teams played back and forth attempting their creativity in the midfield, but with no shots on goal. There was no clear dominant team on the field in the entire 90 minutes of play as both left it all on the pitch.
The first shot on goal came from Luis Montes who received a pass from Rafael Marquez. Montes fired from outside and found the top far corner of goalkeeper Maximo Banguera’s net. The keeper dove but the ball had too much speed for him. Mexico led 1-0.
The troubles began two minutes later when Montes collided with Castillo in an attempt to control a loose ball. Montes got the worst of it suffering a fractured tibia. Castillo also suffered an injury. Both players will be missing the world cup due to their injuries.
More troubles occurred for Mexico as Marquez had a collision with Fidel Martinez and was removed off the pitch. But as time moved forward the Mexicans gained more control, but the Ecuadorians were quick to react and counterattack. The Mexican defense was on line and able to stop anything from the South Americans.
Hector Herrera gave the Ecuadorian fans a scare in the 59th minute, and Paul Aguilar saved the Mexican net in the 62nd after Ochoa made an error on a clearance. The Ecuadorians grew for a short moment, but were not able to capitalize. El Tri’s defense was quick to clear anything that came to close to Ochoa’s net.
On a counterstrike, Marco Fabian ran the ball down the wing and before entering the goal area, he fired. Banguera was off his line and tried to dive, but Fabian’s shot found the near top corner to give Mexico the 2-0 lead.
With two goals down Ecuador increased their attack. They tried to take more possession of the ball. However, it was not enough. They came close to catching the Mexican defense off guard in the 75th minute when Enner Valencia took the ball into the area and came face-to-face with Ochoa. The AC Ajaccio keeper maintained his “cool” and was able to clear the ball saving his net.
On the following play Giovani recovered a loose ball in the area and fired hitting the post. The ball bounced and ricocheted off Banguera’s head into the net for the 3-0. Fortune for Mexico, misfortune for the Ecuadorians who were playing a good game.
The Ecuadorians would get the “honor goal” in the 80th minute on a free kick from a couple of yards outside the box. Edison Mendez shot low. The ball hit defender Hector Moreno who changed the direction of the ball sending it into his own net for the final 3-1.
There was a vast improvement from the Mexican players as they continue to come together prior to the world cup. Mexico will play two more international exhibition friendly games prior to traveling to Brazil. Their next game is against Bosnia-Herzegovina in Chicago. They end their U.S. farewell tour against Portugal in Foxboro, Mass.