Mexico had a great start to their Toulon Tournament by crushing Qatar 4-1. Mexico completely dominated the game and took a 3-0 lead to halftime. Mexico will now face England, who defeated China earlier today by a 2-1 score. The group winners go to the Semifinal, along with the best second-placed team of the three groups.
The first half for Mexico started with a bang. Some quick pressing led to Roberto Alvarado crossing the ball for Diego Lainez to meet with a low shot that went past the keeper.
The early goal meant Mexico gained control of the game, and it took a yellow card to Ismael Govea for Qatar to start gaining better control of the actions. That said, even when they had possession, they failed to create a clear shot on goal.
Mexico had plenty of chances on the counter through Uriel Antuna, but his decision making always seemed let him down. When Antuna finally got things right, Mexico combined for a great play and the second goal of the day. Antuna sent a great cross to Gerardo Arteaga, who headed it back to Eduardo Aguirre. Aguirre was then able to poach it in.
After the goal, Mexico once again took complete control of the match. A great play by Lainez through the right side allowed him to cross back to Aguirre, who gathered and fired in the 3-0.
The second half started in a similar way. Eduardo Aguirre had a chance to score Mexico’s fourth but wasted his opportunity. Eventually, a big Qatari mistake ended with the last Mexican goal. A long lob was headed by the Qatari defender straight to Roberto Alvarado. Alvarado went alone and scored with a left footed goal.
After the 4-0, coach Marco Antonio “Chima” Ruiz started to think of the next match against England and took out Diego Lainez. Previously, he had taken off Govea and Jonathan Gonzalez at halftime because of their yellow cards.
Mexico started to calm down and in the final minute of the game, Abdullah Al Murisi was able to pull back one for Qatar.
This Mexican team was supposed to have a strong squad, and at least they met expectations in their first game. Things will definitely get tougher against England and China, but Mexico showed good things and will be a strong squad for either team if they continue this level of play. Their next match against England should be the key one in the group.