Mexico v Germany Match Review: WC 2018: Group F clash – June 17, 2018
Mexico v Germany Result: Mexico 1, Germany 0
Watch Lozano's goal for Mexico
Mexico scored a famous win over champions Germany with Hirving Lozano providing the solitary winner in the 35th minute of play at the Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow.
The Central Americans were at the German goal right from the beginning of the first-half with Miguel Layun getting a defense splitting pass only to send it sailing over the crossbar. A little later Manuel Neuer was forced to make a save from a diving Hector Moreno header.
The Mexicans kept up the pressure on the German goal with sizzling counter-attacks until they hit gold in the 35th minute. Lozano gets a cross from Javier Hernández and hammers it low into the net with his right foot. 1-0 to El Tri!.
Germany came close to equalizing in the 38th when Toni Kroos directed a free-kick towards the top of the net that Guillermo Ochoa managed to palm but the ball, unfortunately for the Germans, hit the crossbar. Chance missed for Germany.
As expected, Germany launched attack after attack on the Mexican goal going into the second-half. As many as 20 attempts on the goal were made but with no success.
In the mean-time Mexico had a chance to go ahead 2-0 when “Chicarita” Xavier Hernandez was narrowly declared off-side in a one-on-one situation with Manuel Neuer in the 55th minute. For Germany, Sami Khedira and Toni Kroos looked slower and less livelier in the mid-field than usual, giving El-Tri the openings to launch their deadly counter-attacks.
Mexican goalkeeper Memo Ochoa was the hero of the day probably making as many as 15 saves, a majority of them in the 2nd half.
Jurgen Low introduced ageing striker Mario Gomez in place of defender Marvin Plattenhardt and adopts an overtly attacking 3-1-6 formation.
Why he chose to bench younger and fitter players like Leon Goretzka or Ilkay Gündogan is a mystery, for Gomez looked totally ineffective upfront and the German attack looked less threatening after his advent.
Forwards Tony Reus and Julian Brandt were also introduced in the second half, both of whom combinedly got half a dozen chances to score but somehow couldn't convert them. Timo Werner came close to scoring on 4 occasions and Toni Kroos twice, but it just happened to be Mexico's day. El Tri hung on valiantly to the one-goal lead and collect three very valuable points in the process.
A rattled Die Mannschaft now meet Sweden on the 23rd and South Korea on the 27th and it seems very likely that they will be fighting for the 2nd spot in the Group F cluster.
Mexico very much look a team that could easily garner 3 more points from their remaining two matches and proceed to the knock-out rounds.