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Mexico defeats Peru to win U20 Revelations Cup

Mexico held on with ten players to get a 2-1 win over Peru that clinches the tournament for El Tri.

via @miseleccionmx

Mexico won their second straight U20 Revelations Cup, getting a 2-1 win over Peru. The win places Mexico as the winner of the tournament even when the last match between the United States and Paraguay hasn’t been played at the time of this edition since no team can get to Mexico’s 7 points. Mexico repeats the same performance of their win in the first edition of the tournament in 2021, where Mexico opened with a tie and later two 2-1 victories.

The first half started with Mexico hoping to get the win that would give them the tournament, while Peru wanted their first 3 points of the competition. Mexico almost gave up a good opportunity when Abraham Freyfield whiffed trying to clear a ball, but goalkeeper Jose Eulogio was able to get to the ball and save the team. Peru had another chance when a cross went into the area, but the header by a Peruvian attacker went wide. Peru had gained control of the possession, while Mexico sat back and at times looked to counter. A shot from Catriel Cabellos went just wide as Peru threatened again. A shot from Diether Vasquez came real close to scoring, but it was deflected by a slide from Isaias Violante. Peru kept having control of the match, as Mexico only cleared the ball for a potential counter that were never close to coming. And yet off of a corner kick, the cross went into the area and Saul Zamora got a close range header past Peru’s goalkeeper Josue Vargas and into the net for the 1-0 lead. It was completely against the run of play, although it was a terrible mistake from Peru as replays showed that Zamora didn’t even connect with his head but his shoulder. He was so wide open however that the ball easily went in. Off of a free kick, a cross into the area looked to be a great chance but Fidel Ambriz missed heading the ball when he was wide open. A great run from Violante looked to be a possible chance, but his shot went terribly wide. Although Peru had been the better side for the majority of the match, Mexico had their best minutes in the end and took the one goal lead to halftime.

The second half started with Mexico subbing out Christian Torres, Ali Avila, Karel Campos, and Joshua Mancha for Rodrigo Huescas, Esteban Lozano, Gael Garcia, and Hector Uribe. Peru looked to start strong but early on, Mexico had an impact from the substitutes. After a good run, Hector Uribe got past a defender and got off a strong right footed shot past Vargas for the 2-0 lead. Uribe later made another run that showed that he came into the match ready to play. A counter attack ended with a shot from Huescas that was saved by Vargas. Peru then subbed out Bruno Portugal, Diether Vazquez, and Leonardo Diaz for Pablo Goicochea, Joao Grimaldo, and Anderson Villacorta. A cross into the area was headed wide by Zamora. Then after another bad mistake from Jesus Alcantar who coughed up the ball, Peru got a goal with a left footed shot from Pablo Goicochea to put the game at 2-1. Minutes later Alcantar and started a brawl which got him a red card and got Mexico down to ten players, capping a terrible tournament from the defender. Mexico subbed out Garcia Bernal for Alfredo Gutierrez, as they now looked to be in serious trouble. Mexico wasted a great chance when a ball into the area was mishit not once but twice by Lozano. Goicochea then got a volley in the area, but it went wide. A cross into the area was just missed by a Peruvian attacker. Peru went all out in the attack, but never got an opportunity and Mexico held on to their lead. The whistle blew and there was another fight between Peru and Mexico, but Mexico would walk away with the win and title.

Mexico won the second edition of the Revelations Cup after being able to hold on to a lead after the terrible performance from Jesus Alcantar, who gifted Peru a goal and a red card. Still Mexico was able to get the tournament even when their performances weren’t the best. Perhaps that was to be expected, with interim coach Adrian Sanchez taking his first competition with the team after Coach Luis Perez was fired for their disastrous performance in the U20 CONCACAF Championship. Although the win is nowhere near a reprieve after that performance ended up costing Mexico the qualification to the U20 World Cup and worse yet to the 2024 Olympic Games, it is still a good result for a team that will need performances like this to bounce back and for that result not to bury the team. Adrian Sanchez will hope that the win might earn him the job to replace Luis Perez, but overall the win doesn’t change that the program is still in shambles after the failure in Honduras. Mexico was however able to win it and make it two for two in a Revelations Cup that hopefully continues giving this kind of teams a chance at silverware.