Mexico Cruises Past Panama in 2019 CONCACAF Nations League Match

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistOctober 16, 2019

MEXICO CITY, MEXICO - OCTOBER 15: Roberto Alvarado of Mexico celebrates with teammate Carlos Salcedo after scoring the first goal of his team during the match between Mexico and Panama as part of the Concacaf Nations League at Azteca Stadium on October 15, 2019 in Mexico City, Mexico. (Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images)
Hector Vivas/Getty Images

Mexico earned its second straight win in the 2019 CONCACAF Nations League with a 3-1 victory over Panama.

After a 5-1 win over Bermuda on Friday, El Tri continued to roll Tuesday at Estadio Azteca thanks to a go-ahead goal by Jose Macias in the 75th minute. Roberto Alvarado added a goal and an assist before Rodolfo Pizarro sealed the victory in the 92nd minute.

The squad moved to the front of Group B with six points, which could be enough to advance to the tournament's semifinals taking place next June.

The match appeared destined to be a draw until Macias finally broke the tie with a strong finish in the box:

Panama had several chances to get its second score before and after this goal, but the visitors weren't able to find the back of the net.

Mexico appeared to be in complete control early on, with Alvarado eventually putting the team ahead on a 28th-minute goal:

The squad held possession for more than three-quarters of the first half while getting most of the opportunities near the net. The level of play seemed to be enough to lead by multiple goals at intermission.

However, the halftime score was even at one thanks to an own goal off Carlos Salcedo.

Mexico was the better team but couldn't come out ahead on the scoresheet:

Things finally changed in the second half as the hosts were able to turn their chances into goals.

Macias scored the important one, but Pizarro's score was enough to seal the win in the final moments.

El Tri used mostly a younger squad during this international break, leaving off notable veterans like Andres Guardado, Hector Moreno, Javier Hernandez and others. This lowered the stakes but also put more pressure on those on the pitch.

While there was some sloppiness, the squad passed its test with a valuable win.

      

What's Next?

These same teams will battle again in one month, with Panama hosting Mexico on Nov. 15.

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