Favorites Portugal, Mexico meet early in Confederations Cup

Favorites Portugal, Mexico meet early in Confederations Cup

The unlikely hero of Sunday’s Group A Confederations Cup match belonged to Portugal.

Mexico Squad: Goalkeepers: Guillermo Ochoa (Granada), Alfredo Talavera (Deportivo Toluca), Rodolfo Cota (Chivas Guadalajara); Defenders: Hector Moreno (PSV Eindhoven), Luis Reyes (Atlas), Diego Reyes (Espanyol), Nestor Araujo (Santos Laguna), Carlos Salcedo (Fiorentina), Rafael Marquez (Atlas); Midfielders: Andres Guardado (PSV Eindhoven), Jonathan dos Santos (Villarreal), Hector Herrera (Porto), Javier Aquino (Tigres), Oswaldo Alanis (Chivas Guadalajara), Miguel Layun (Porto), Giovani dos Santos (LA Galaxy), Carlos Vela (Real Sociedad); Forwards: Javier Hernandez (Bayer Leverkusen), Raul Jimenez (Benfica), Marco Fabian (Eintracht Frankfurt), Hirving Lozano (Pachuca), and Oribe Peralta (Club America).

“It’s a dream to be playing with Ronaldo”, Silva said ahead of Portugal’s Confederation Cup debut against Mexico on Sunday in Kazan.

But Russia coach Stanislav Cherchesov, appointed after the country’s disastrous Euro 2016 campaign, predicts a tricky encounter as he oversees his first competitive match in charge.

Cristiano Ronaldo lead the European Champions in their opener, and the Real Madrid star was involved in a big moment after 20 minutes.

The referee made use of the new Video Assistant Referee technology in the first half, as a Portugal goal was disallowed.

Within 15 minutes Portugal had taken the lead, however, with Ronaldo, who has now scored or provided an assist in each of his last seven games for the national team, nearly inevitably at the heart of it.

Portugal regained the lead in the 86th minute through Cedric Soares’ first senior global goal but Moreno’s 91st minute header off the post ensured both nations shared the spoils.

Ronaldo tees up Quaresma and Portugal lead Mexico 1-0! Ten of its players are with Portuguese teams.

Ochoa made a great diving save in the 85th to keep young Portugal forward Andre Silva from scoring with a header.

But Portugal’s celebrations were premature as Moreno popped up with the equaliser.

A tame Ronaldo free kick bounced off the wall, and Joao Moutinho played the ball back into the mixer. But we’re a great side too, and I’m sure we can stop him. We think that, as a whole team, they’re excellent. “Every game is a reason for us to get together and cheer for our Mexico lindo y querido!” There’s no need to sound the alarm. “He is an idol even for the players, and we hope that he can help Portugal with some of his goals and victories”. Salceio slips, and Ronaldo taps the ball across for Quaresma to cut past the “keeper for an easy finish. I’m very happy to be playing alongside our captain”. “I have a pact with the players and we treat these personal matters away from the national team”. At the beginning we couldn’t enjoy good control of the ball but then we managed to balance things out and could have won it in the end.

Overall a point each was a fair result.

KAZAN, Russia (AP) – Portugal had a first-half goal against Mexico chalked off in the Confederations Cup after the action was reviewed on video.