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October 12, 2011

Brazil shows pride to defeat Mexico

2014 FIFA World Cup host came from behind with ten players and defeated ‘El Tri’ on the road by 2-1, thanks to a penalty defended by Jefferson and the goals from Ronaldinho and Marcelo late in the second half.

By Andrew Hill

After a poor game against Costa Rica last Friday, which despite winning by 1-0 didn’t fulfill the fans expectations, Brazil wanted to change its image against Mexico, team that had a streak of 14 matches undefeated. Leaded by their star and former FIFA World Player of the year, Ronaldinho, who had four years without scoring for the National Team, the Brazilians arrived to Corona Stadium in search of a victory that allowed them to dissipate the critics at least until their next friendly game, against Gabon on November 10 at Libreville.

It was their 36th head-to-head confrontation, and Brazil was on the lead with 20 victories, against nine from the Mexicans -the other six games ended up tied- that put themselves ahead in score early in the game, through an own goal from Brazilian defender David Luiz at minute 10. Things got worse for the five-time FIFA World Cup Champions when Dani Alves was sent off with his second yellow card of the game, after bringing down Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez inside the box in the last minutes of the first half. Mexico had the chance of taking a two-goal lead before the break, but goalkeeper Jefferson defended the penalty kick from Andres Guardado.

“After the penalty blocked by Jefferson, I said in the locker room that we were going to win anyway.”

In the second half it seemed as if Mexico was the team with 10 players on pitch, instead of the ‘Canarinha’ that began to control the game leaded by a great Ronaldinho. It was going to be Brazil’s number 10 and captain who through a free kick tied the game to one apiece with 11 minutes to go, and broke his 4-year streak of no goals with the National team.

That goal was a boost for the Brazilians, who not satisfied with the draw went upfront for more. They got their reward four minutes later, when Marcelo scored their second goal of the night after a good individual play inside the box, for the 2-1 victory.

It was the first defeat for the Mexicans under coach Jose Manuel de la Torre’s order in 15 games, while for his Brazilian colleague, ‘Mano’ Meneses, it was his tenth victory with the ‘Canarinha’ in 18 games.

Brazil showed pride to overcome adversity, which left ‘Mano’ very happy for that “indignation” he saw reflected on his players when they found themselves down by one in the score, and then again when Alves was sent off with a red card. And Brazil also showed some luck to win this game, because if Jefferson wouldn’t have blocked Guardado’s penalty kick, picking up a 2-goal deficit against Mexico on the road would have been improbable.

That missed penalty gave them a boost to win the game, and post-match Neymar confirmed it: “after the penalty blocked by Jefferson, I said in the locker room that we were going to win anyway.”

We’ll see if they can keep the momentum against Gabon next month.

About the Author
When it comes to sports, Andrew Hill translates his passion into truthful and objective information of interest for the sports betting industry. As of today he specializes in the coverage of European soccer and NCAA basketball for BetIAS’ website.