Wednesday, March 12, 2008

RB, Mexico/Canada

3- Goal! Will Johnson. I was just talking to the Canadian reporter here about him, as he used to play in the U.S. Mexico is behind - wow - if the two CONCACAF favorites go down, this qualifying tournament could blow wide open.
10 - The crowd has been stunned into near silence. They're cheering a little, but not much.
14 - They're working their way into it now, especially since Mexico is putting pressure on. Corner for Mexico. Cleared.
16 - Hey, it's the other American (kinda) in action for Mexico. Edgar has a crack on goal, could have done better, shoots high. He's frustrated.
21 - Just as a reporter from Mexico is telling me that if Hugo doesn't get the team to the Olympics, he's done, Villaluz breaks into the box and earns a PK.
22 - GOAL! Landin (no, not that one, Luis Angel) nails the PK.
24 - The crowd hates the ref - they shouldn't, because from up here, that looked like a soft penalty call.
28 - Canada is having good runs of possession, but not getting deep into Mexico's territory, they yield a corner on a counter. It's taken short, served in and cleared.
29 - I rode in an elevator down the the Guatemalan press conference (on the locker room level) with Dale Mitchell (coach of Canada's senior team). He looked grim. I wonder if he's any more cheerful now. Probably not. Some of these coaches, I tell you, they don't make soccer seem like a fun game at all. Life and death at all times.
34- Castillo just won a total midfield duel with Johnson. The two Americans, going at it for their other countries.

Halftime - Mexico raised their game after they got scored on, and they're looking a lot better now. That said, only a punch from Ochoa kept Canada from taking the lead again. On the other hand, their defense is looking vulnerable at times. I still expect Mexico to pull out the win. They can't lose focus, though, because Canada could sneak in another goal.

54 - Mexico continues to pressure Canada, but their fans are getting impatient. There are whistles and the cheers are more demanding than supportive.
55- A shot into the side netting animates the crowd, they holler "Puto" when
Joshua Wagenaar punts the ball downfield.
57- Landin gets a yellow and the crowd hates the ref again, though replay shows validity. The game has oddly slowed down. Perhaps both teams are tired.
63 - Mexico has these great little combinations, but then they screw up the very last pass.
65 - Canada is defending almost the entire time, now, and they look tired. They concede a corner. Cleared.
67 - Mexico's fans are grumpy, but the team is looking pretty good. I don't think Canada can bunker successfully for the rest of the game. That's too much time. Mexico's going to make good on one of their attacks. Probably.
OOoohhhh. Landin gets another yellow. He had one foot studs up, but it was, as Grahame just said, "a bit dodgy of a call". Mexico is down to ten men. The crowd is completely deflated. They can't even boo. They're too stunned.
73- Canada isn't playing as if they have a man advantage. If they want to shock the world and win this one, they have to prove they want it and go after it.
74 - Villaluz nearly beats
Wagenaar to a backpass. He's showing heart, and that fires up the crowd. Meh-He-Co!
76 - Castillo on a run fires across the face of the goal.
78 - Will Johnson gets a straight red for a tackle from behind. The sides are equal now. By the way, I guess I shouldn't call Will an American. He played for the U.S. U17 team at one point, but apparently, he has residency in the U.S., not citizenship.
81- Castillo and another player fall in front of goal, trying to draw PK's. The ref isn't having it. The crowd hates him.
Wagenaar had a scary moment where the ball nearly got away from him in the box. He, and Canada, survived it.
90 + Now they have to deal with a late FK. Pablo Barrera sends it wide, but not by much.
Castillo is nearly the hero! he shoots towards goal, beats Wagenaar, and the shot is deflected and trickles just wide.
Game over. 1-1


Gabriel in Argentina said...

wow luis..maybe Mexico is not that good..what are you going to do?

L.B. said...

Write about how bad the result was. What else would I do?