Oribe Peralta's lone goal gave Mexico a second international-friendly win in three nights as El Tri took down Panama 1-0 from Toyota Park just outside of Chicago on Tuesday night.
Fresh off a less than convincing 2-1 victory against New Zealand, Tuesday provided one more opportunity for Mexico to get its side clicking on all cylinders before an enormous World Cup qualifying match against the United States on Nov. 11.
But a tentative first half against Panama didn't do much to ease Mexican reservations. Through the first 42 minutes, the only chances that either team could muster was long-distance shots from outside the box.
In the 43rd minute, Mexico's Giovani Dos Santos had the best chance of the first half when he was able to get on the end of an Isaac Brizuela cross and redirect it toward the goal.
But at close range, Panama goalkeeper Jose Calderon was able to turn the chance away with some quick reflexes, via the Los Angeles Galaxy:
LA Galaxy @LAGalaxy
HT: @OficialGio with the best chance of the half but it's scoreless at the break: https://t.co/EScgV2sI05 #MEXvPAN https://t.co/I8p4JJka6K2016-10-12 02:54:10
It took until the 59th minute for Mexico to break the deadlock when Peralta was able to get on the end of a Dos Santos cross and finish his chance in between two Panama defenders.
The goal received accolades all around from ESPN FC's Tom Marshall:
Tom Marshall @mexicoworldcup
Lovely goal from Mexico. Great work from Hirving Lozano, Giovani dos Santos centers and Oribe nets for El Tri! Mexico 1-0 Panama.2016-10-12 03:23:50
Actor Rafa Mercadante liked what he saw:
Rafa Mercadante @mercadanterafa
GOOOOOOOOOOLLLL Del beauty full Peralta !!!! 😱😱😱😱😱😱😱😱😱2016-10-12 03:25:23
But for a team that's ranked 15th in the world by FIFA and tuning up for a huge World Cup-qualifying clash against the United States, having difficulties pulling away from a Panama side ranked 62nd could bring about cause for concern.
If Dos Santos and Peralta, though, can throttle the Mexican offense just for a moment like they did on Tuesday night, then El Tri have something to build off moving forward.