Portugal finished their FIFA Confederations Cup Russia 2017 campaign on a high by beating Mexico 2-1 after extra time in the play-off for third place at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow in front of 42,659 fans.
Guillermo Ochoa came to Mexico’s rescue early in the match when he saved Andre Silva’s penalty kick.
Mexico opened the scoring in the 54th minute when Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez dribbled inside the penalty area to the goalline before chopping a cross in front of goal, and Portugal defender Luis Neto inadvertently deflected the ball into his own net, while under pressure from Carlos Vela.
However, Portugal fought back and Pepe stabbed home a dramatic equaliser with the sole of his boot from Ricardo Quaresma’s cross in stoppage time to send the match to extra time.
Portugal got another chance at the penalty spot after Miguel Layun handled Gelson Martins’s attempted flick in the penalty area, and this time Adrien Silva made no mistake, as he sent Ochoa the wrong way to score the winning goal.
FIFA.com team reporter analysis
“It seemed to all be going Mexico’s way tonight – first with Ochoa’s magnificent save and then with Portugal’s subdued second half – but then one of Portugal’s most experienced defenders answered the call, flying in with total commitment to score and level the game in the 91st minute. Extra time saw one converted penalty and two red cards, an electric end to what was otherwise a subdued match. Portugal proved yet again that, for all their faults, this team has the appetite and physical capacity to go the distance.”
Marco Monteiro, Portugal team reporter
“You could point out that they were three minutes away from victory, but in the end, Portugal deserved the win. Portugal were the better side throughout, and if it was not for Ochoa, they might have scored earlier. Still, there were some encouraging individual performances from Chicharito, Carlos Vela and captain Rafael Marquez. There will be time for a reflection after the tournament, but the result today leaves a bitter taste for Mexico, no doubt.”
Martin Langer, Mexico team reporter
Budweiser Man of the Match
Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa may have been on the losing side today, but his outstanding saves throughout the match, including his magnificent stop on Andre Silva’s first-half penalty, earned him well-deserved recognition.
50Six of the eight goals scored by Mexico at Russia 2017 came after the 50th minute, including Luis Neto’s own goal in the play-off for third place. Also, for those eight goals, there were no repeat goalscorers (Hernandez, Moreno, Jimenez, Peralta, Araujo, Lozano, Fabian, own goal).