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With a little help from South Korea, Mexico through to World Cup Round of 16

Mexico falls to Sweden but it doesn’t matter.

Mexico v Sweden: Group F - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images

Juan Carlos Osorio’s Mexico national team fell 3-0 to Sweden but still advanced to the Round of 16 of the World Cup following South Korea’s shock 2-0 win over Germany.

Osorio repeated lineups for the first time since joining El Tri, starting with Edson Alvarez as right back and Miguel Layun as winger, after Mexico’s 2-1 win over South Korea.

From the onset, it was Sweden who took initiative of the match, in what was a first 15 minutes to forget for El Tri. Guillermo Ochoa was forced to a spectacular save before Andreas Granqvist and Marcus Berg both had two second-hand chances to open the scoring.

Carlos Vela, however, did give Mexico a chance moments after, with a curling effort that went inches wide of the Swedish goal.

All across the first half, Sweden continued to muscle away their Mexican counterparts, and they came close once again to grabbing the breakthrough when Berg forced Ochoa to another monumental save.

Just five minutes after halftime, Ludwig Augustinsson struck Sweden’s first goal of the game.

It didn’t take long for Sweden to double their lead after a penalty was called for an Hector Moreno tackle on Marcus Berg. Captain Andreas Granqvist stepped up and put the score 2-0 in favor of the Europeans.

Worrying about a potential exit, Juan Carlos Osorio threw on an extra midfielder in the form of Marco Fabian, but it was Sweden who scored a third when Edson Alvarez deflected a cross into the back of his own net.

With the result beyond doubt, Mexico knew it was imperative to score goals if Germany managed to get on the scoresheet in their other game against South Korea. Carlos Vela was the closest to scoring a Mexican goal when he failed to connect from point-blank range.

With just minutes to go, the only thing separating Mexico from the Round of 16 was a German win, but against all odds, South Korea scored through Kim Young-gwon to keep El Tri’s dream alive.

As several Mexican players took the ground in disappointment at the final whistle, Son Heung-min became an instant Mexican hero, scoring the goal that eliminated Germany and gave Mexico a place in the Round of 16.