Monday, January 23, 2017

Mexico 1 Paraguay 0: Guardado extends unbeaten streak

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 29 May 2016

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A first-half goal from Andres Guardado saw Mexico extend their unbeaten streak with a 1-0 win in their Copa America Centenario warm-up game against Paraguay on Saturday.

Guardado found the net in the 32nd minute at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta to extend Mexico’s unbeaten run to 18 games, which includes an eight-match winning record.

It was Guardado’s 24th goal for Mexico, who face Chile on Wednesday in their final warm-up game for the special-edition Copa America, held in the United States, where they will take on Uruguay, Jamaica and Venezuela in Group C.

Paraguay, meanwhile, have no more friendlies before they kick off their tournament against Costa Rica, with matches against Colombia and hosts USA to follow in Group A.

It was listed as just a friendly but the game was anything but in the opening stages, with three yellow cards handed out by referee Edvin Jurisevic in the opening 25 minutes. 

Paraguay’s Oscar Romero was the first to register a shot towards goal but his ambitious long-range effort from just outside the area went wide of Guillermo Ochoa’s goal. 

Mexico won four corners inside the opening 10 minutes of the game but only Rafael Marquez came close with a header that just flew over the bar. 

Jesus Duenas went down in the 20th minute with a dislocated finger, before he was fouled by Celso Ortiz just a minute after re-entering the pitch.

And in the 32nd minute Duenas made Paraguay pay for his pain, lifting a superb ball over the top of the defence to Jurgen Damm, who set up Guardado for the game’s only goal. 

Bayer Leverkusen forward Javier Hernandez had a quiet game by his standards, and was one of several players to make way early in the second half from both sides. 

Robert Piris came close to bringing Paraguay level in the 51st minute and his volley from distance forced Ochoa into an awkward save, but the Mexico shot-stopper pushed it away from danger.

Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio and Paraguay counterpart Ramon Diaz continued to ring the changes as both sides experiment before the Copa.

AFC Bournemouth winger Juan Iturbe came on for just his third international appearance since 2009 in the closing stages but could not help Paraguay find an equaliser.

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