Mexico beat Uruguay after Copa Amrica plays Chile anthem by mistake
Rafa Marquez and Hector Herrera scored late goals to lift Mexico over Uruguay 3-1 in their Copa Amrica opener
Rafael Marquez and Hector Herrera scored late goals to lift Mexico over Uruguay 3-1 in their Copa Amrica opener on Sunday night.
Marquezs close-range shot in the 84th minute broke a 1-1 tie and Herreras header added another in extra time. Mexicos first was an own-goal by Uruguays Alvaro Pereira four minutes into the match. Marquezs goal came 10 minutes after Diego Godins header levelled the scores for Uruguay at 1-1.
A vastly pro-Mexico crowd of 60,025 watched the match-up of what are considered the top teams in Group C.
The evening began on an odd note when the wrong national anthem was played for Uruguay in the pre-match ceremonies with the players visibly confused as the Chile anthem rang out round the stadium.
This evening during the pre-match ceremony, due to human error, we inadvertently played the incorrect national anthem, said the tournaments organizers in a statement. We sincerely apologize to the Uruguayan federation, the Uruguay national team, the people of Uruguay and to the fans for this mistake. We will work with all parties involved to ensure such an error does not occur again.
Mexico, considered a serious challenger to win their first Copa Amrica title, extended their unbeaten streak to 20 games. Uruguay were without their best player, Luis Suarez, who injured a hamstring while playing for Barcelona last month.
Marquezs goal came from the simplest of finishes as the wild, enthusiastic crowd erupted.
Uruguays Matius Vecino and Mexicos Andres Guardado drew red cards and will miss one game through suspension. Uruguay were down to 10 players after Vecino left just before half-time after kicking Mexicos Jesus Manuel Corona.
But despite being at a man disadvantage, Uruguay went on the attack earlier in the second half and, after several near misses, levelled it at 1-1.
Guardado was sent off to set up a free kick for Uruguay. Carlos Sanchez sent the ball into the area and Godin rose in a crowd and headed home. It was the first goal Mexico had allowed in its last 252 minutes of play. The celebrating Uruguayan players were briefly pelted by water bottles from the crowd.
Early on, the own goal came after a near-perfect cross by Guardado. Pereira and Herrera both went up for it. Herrera missed but Pereira, trying to head the ball over the net, instead knocked it past Fernando Muslera and Mexico led 1-0.
In Sundays other match, Josef Martinez scored in the 15th minute as Venezuela beat 10-man Jamaica 1-0.
Martinezs goal was set up by a Jamaican giveaway after an attempted clearance. Venezuela defender Rolf Feltscher intercepted and started a series of quick passes that freed Martinez near the left corner of the six-yard box.
Jamaica midfielder Rodolph Austin was sent off in the 23rd minute, receiving a straight red card for a studs-up tackle on Venezuelas Tomas Rincon.
Michael Hector nearly tied it for Jamaica with a right-footed shot that hit the post in the 49th minute.