Mexico dims French hope to enter top 16 by claiming 2-0 victory

08:30, June 18, 2010      

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Mexico dimmed the hope of France to march into the knockout stage by beating Les Bleus 2-0 in their second World Cup group A match here on Thursday.

It was the first triumph of the men in green against France in history. Mexico conceded five defeats and one draw in their past six encounters with France.

The first heartbroken moment for French supporters came in the 64th minute when striker Javier Hernandez received precisely a long pass from midfield and charged to pose a face-to-face challenge to French goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

The Manchester United forward, who came in as substitute in the 55th minute kept a clear mind before the net, took the ball around Lloris and slot it into the empty net.

The consistent performance of Hernandez has aroused the interest of European top clubs. He jointed the Manchest United early in April with a contract of over 9 million dollars.

Hernandez was also named the Man of the Match.

The Mexicans extended their lead in the 79th minute with a penalty by Cuauhtemoc Blanco after Pablo Barrera was felled by French defender Eric Abidal inside the box. Blanco fired the penalty kick low into the left corner to create ecstatic scenes from the Mexican fans in Polokwane, north South Africa.

It also earned a title for Blanco, the first Mexican to score in three different World Cup tournaments.

The men of Javier Aguirre showed their dangerous side, a sharp contrast to their performance in the first match against South Africa. They had aimed to launch attacks from the right wing, a weakness of Les Bleus.

Another impressive clash came in the 12th minute when Guillermo Franco gained a shooting chance after controlling a pass on the edge of the France box, but his efforts went off target.

Mexico made 12 shots throughout the match while France 13.

It was a pivotal game for both squads in Group A after France came to a goalless draw with Uruguay while Mexico tied host country South Africa to 1-1.

Uruguay beat South Africa 3-0 in their second group match on Wednesday.

Source: Xinhua

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(Editor:赵晨雁)

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