The Mexican national soccer team escaped a grim scenario in the CONCACAF qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar by coming from behind with two goals in a couple of minutes to beat Jamaica 2-1 at Independence Park in Kingston on Thursday night.
El Tri was coming off two consecutive defeats in its visits to the United States and Canada last November and needed the win to avoid losing the pace to obtain one of the three direct tickets to the World Cup granted by the North, Central American, and Caribbean zone.
The first half was completely dominated by the Mexican team which, however, was unable to score or create clear goal opportunities, only a header by Héctor Herrera from a corner kick for close to the goal defended by Andre Blake.
Damion Lowe’s terrible foul to Andrés Guardado
Just before halftime, a kick by Damion Lowe’s defender above the ankle of Mexican captain Andrés Guardado generated a sending-off after the VAR review, leaving Jamaica with 10 men.
— TUDN MEX (@TUDNMEX) January 28, 2022
However, despite this disadvantage, it was the Caribbean side who opened the scoring in the 50th minute when, from a corner kick, defender Néstor Araujo mistakenly rejected the ball to the center and after another marking error by Rogelio Funes-Mori, Daniel Johnson shot the ball into the goal defended by Guillermo Ochoa.
Two goals in two minutes for Mexico
It was minutes of suffering for the team coached by Gerardo “Tata” Martino, who had to wait for the substitution of Jesús “Tecatito” Corona to equalize the score.
The equalizer came in the 81st minute when, from the right flank, Charly Rodríguez made a great cross that was headed in by Alexis Vega and after the rebound by goalkeeper Blake, Henry Martin only had to push it in to score the goal.
The turnaround was practically complete in the next play, seven minutes from time, when the aforementioned new Sevilla player broke down the right flank and played a beautiful pass to Vega, who shot from close range with his left foot to make the final score 2-1.
With this result, Mexico reached 17 points and remained in the first three places of the final group of eight Concacaf teams, while Jamaica remained with 7 points in the distant sixth place of the same classification.
What’s next for Mexico and Jamaica?
Mexico’s next game will be next Sunday, January 30, when they host Costa Rica at the Azteca Stadium.
On the other hand, on the same day, Jamaica will have to visit the Rommel Fernandez Stadium to face Panama.