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United States 1-2 Mexico: Rafa Marquez the hero as El Tri break Hex curse

Rafael Marquez headed in a dramatic late winner to see Mexico to a 2-1 victory over the United States in their World Cup qualifier in Columbus on Friday.

The Mexico captain headed in a Miguel Layun corner in the 89th minute at MAPFRE Stadium.

Juan Carlos Osorio’s visitors were dominant early and took the lead through a deflected Layun strike.

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They also hit the woodwork through Jesus Corona and Carlos Vela in the first half, and the USA improved after the break.

The Americans were rewarded with a Bobby Wood equalizer and went close to finding a winner before Marquez’s heroics in both teams’ opening game of the fifth round in CONCACAF qualifying.

Mexico substitute Carlos Salcedo was shown a red card in additional time.

Jurgen Klinsmann handed talented teenager Christian Pulisic a start, while he also opted for a back three.

Mexico started Javier Hernandez and Giovani dos Santos in their attack, with Vela also in the XI in his first international in 12 months.

The visitors were dominant early and Corona struck the post from 20 yards in the 10th minute, with Tim Howard getting a fingertip on the effort.

They would take a deserved lead through Layun.

There will be no Dos A Cero tonight for the #USMNT . @Miguel_layun puts Mexico in front! #USAvMEX https://t.co/JDSSZAVNC1
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) November 12, 2016

After a battle in midfield fell to him, Layun’s 25-yard effort took a deflection and found the bottom corner.

Vela hit the crossbar with a header soon after as Osorio’s men were unfortunate not to add to their opener.

The USA finally started to settle into the contest, only to lose goalkeeper Howard to injury before half-time.

The hosts would equalize just four minutes into the second half.

Jozy Altidore ➡️ Bobby Wood to bring it back level. Game on in Columbus. #USAvMEX https://t.co/ck9COY7g9g
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) November 12, 2016

Good work from Jozy Altidore led to the striker releasing Wood, who still had work to do before poking in a finish from inside the area.

Wood stung the palms of Mexico goalkeeper Alfredo Talavera, who was then needed to tip over an Altidore free kick.

But Mexico would score a winner, with Marquez finding the corner with a near-post header from a Layun set-piece before Salcedo saw red.

It had to be Rafa Marquez! El Tri’s 37-year-old captain provides Mexico the late goal in Columbus. #USAvMEX https://t.co/G2e9kwUe5o
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) November 12, 2016

Sat 12 Nov, 2016
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