Portugal 2-2 Mexico: match report
Portugal and Mexico got their Confederation Cup advantures off to a lively start at Kazan Arena as the reigning European Champions looked to continue their recent success with a win over CONCACAF representatives Mexico.
Mexico got off to the better start and looked dangerous through Carlos Vela on the right and Chicharito loitering in the middle looking for an inch to give his side the lead. It was Portgal who struck first, however, when Ronaldo broke free and slowed up when he knew he was about to be caught. The Real Madrid striker played a lovely ball into Ricardo Quaresma at the edge of the six-yard box and he kept his composure to roll the ball into the net after 35 minutes.
It was that Vela, Chicharito connection that would prove fruitful for Mexico as they drew level just seven minutes later. The Real Sociedad attacker crossed to Hernandez and he headed beyond Patricio from point blank range giving the keeper no chance.
The second half was all Mexico and Portugal seemed to lose interest in taking the lead until the end started to appear on the horizon. They picked up a gear and had their rewards when Andre Silva scored thanks to a deflection on his shot, beating Guillherme Ochoa to leave it 2-1.
With a last gasp drive forward, Mexico won a corner and Hector Moreno, who just moved to AS Roma, headered home as Portugal were left to settle for a draw after taking that late lead.
Mexico play New Zealand at Olimpiyskiy Stadion Fisht on Wednesday and Portugal play Russia in Moscow's Otkrytiye Arena on the same night as they look to put on a more complete display in their next outing.
Portugal vs Mexico live stream online: Confederations Cup latest news
90'+3' GAME OVER! 2-2 it ends. Two very similar halves of football provide four goals and a great game of football!
90'+3' Andre Gomes booked for saying something to the referee presumably? It was long after the goal as Mexico went to kick off and restart the goal.
90'+2' YES THEY CAN! Hector Moreno gets a head to Dos Santos' corner and he finishes beyond Patricio.
90' Corner at the death for Mexico. Carvalho clears it. Can they score!
90' Up the other end and Gelson Martins gets turns and shoots as it slides wide.
89' Chicharito with a chance to level things but his first touch is brutal and it goes straight to Patricio.
88' After a quick check for the VAR, we have a goal! the referee stalls things for a second before the restart.
86' GOAL! Ochoa so unlucky. He was caught out with a deflection in the end. Cedric Soares strikes it after getting it from a Gelson Martins cross that Herrera can't control.
85' What a save! Ball comes in from the left and Andre Silva meets it with his head, sending it into the opposite corner. Ochoa reaches out and gets a hand to it! Brilliant save.
82' Quaresma is replaced by AC Milan new boy, Andre Silva. Quaresma can be happy with his day's work as he scored and looked dangerous with a couple of chances.
81' Ronaldo links up with Quaresma and the latter drives a shot low at Ochoa. He saves it and Mexico break. Gio Dos Santos gets it on the right and strikes with his left. He might have had better options inside but went alone. Game coming to life now.
80' Peralta's first involvement is a foul on Fonte. as the pair battle for the ball.
79' Peralta replaces Raul Jimenez.
78' Martins lets Ronaldo in but he turns and plays it to Martins, who gives it to Gomes. The three heavily involved now as Portugal try to make something. Mexico holding firm.
76' Gomes fouls Jonathan Dos Santos.
75' Another Mexico attack breaks down. They're trying but not able to manage anything worthwhile this half.
73' Quaresma lining up the cross with his right. Way to much mustard on that one. Gelson Martins gets it before it goes out for a throw but is tackled. Throw is the result in the end.
72' Ronaldo fouled by Guadrado. A little awkward from that anlge but a decent left foot might be able to coax it towards goal.
70' Guardado tries to play it to Layun on the left to help Mexico build an attack but they're on different pages and Portugal get it back.
69' Layun fires the free over.
68' Adrien Silva gets booked for a foul on Gio Dos Santos. Quite a cheeky trip as the Mexican raced by him.
66' Salcedo, who had an ankle issue earlier jogs off and Nestor Araujo comes on in his place.
65' Portugal lacking energy in the middle of the field and up front. Allowing Mexico so much of the ball.
Layun the defender who boxed Martins out.
63' Ronaldo plays it through to Martins but Mexico do well to get back and he can't make it to the ball. Mexico building again.
56' Nani is replaced by Gelson. Adrien replaces Moutinho.
56' Carlos Vela is replaced by Gio Dos Santos..
55' Nani puts Ronaldo away down the right. He turns and plays to Queresma. Chance looks to be gone as Portugal think of a new way to attack before losing it again.
54' Similar start we are seeing here. Mexico controlling much of the play but nothing doing so far.
53' Guerreiro nearly makes another costly mistakes as he gifts it to Dos Santos but he runs into trouble and Portugal reover.
51' Raul Jimenez has a crack. Blocked by Pepe and put out for a corner.
50' Ronaldo tries to pass inside but Salcedo blocks it with his left foot and gets his ankle caught in the ground. Looked like a sore one. He's up and at them again though.
49' Lethal ball in from a free by Guardado but nobody can reach it.
47' Mexico the protagonists again to start this half.
46' The second half is underway!
Mexico also enjoying 56% possession. They've been very good in the first half but looking vulnerable at the back.
Chicharito is far more accurate with his head than he is with his feet.
We've got a game on our hands here. Both sides with plenty of chances. Seven for Poertugal and nine for Mexico and a host of almost chances.
45' Hernandez has a chance but he hits it way over the bar! He has a look down at the ground to see if it was a lump in the ground that caused the wayward shot. Nobody's falling for that one, Javier! That's how the half ends. 1-1 and all to play for.
43' Chicharito hits the ground as Cedric crashes into him from behind. The Mexican winces but shakes it off.
39' Raphael Guerreiro with a nightmare just before it.
39' GOAL! If there was going to be one, it was going to be Vela to Chicharito. The former cross to the latter and the Little Pea heads beyond Rui Patricio.
38' Ronaldo with a backheel to Quaresma and he hesitates, nearly falls over the ball, before eventually getting a shot away that creeps wide. Nice move from Portugal again.
37' Mexico's best chance. Vela with a teasing cross that finds Chicharito but he can't beat Patricio as his header hits the ground first, which takes the heat off it.
34' GOAL! Quaresma almost walsk it into the net. Ronaldo breaks free and realises he won't make it so he turns, almost feigns a pass backwards before cutting it inside to a free Quaresma.
33' Carvalho swings a harmless cross towards the penalty area but Reyes heads it and it takes off towards the goal. It nearly dips over Ochoa but lands on the top of the net.
32' Quaresma fouled again in the middle of the field. Hint of him buying that one.
29' Nope. Vela looks for Layun down the left but too much hot sauce on it. Easy for Patricio.
28' Vela has Patricio scrambling with the free but it just can't find it's way inside the post.
27' Mexico's pressing works out as Fonte puts it out for a throw. Chicharito wins a free shortly after as Andre Gomes fouls the Bundesliga hitman.
26' Cedric breaks down the right and Quaresma feeds him but Ochoa does well to close him down and saves to put it out for a corner.
25' Vela squares but Quaresma clears. Portugal on the break now before Ronaldo plays it to Carvalho and they slow it down.
23' Andre Gomes now with a chance. It's a swing and a miss as he can't make contact with the ball. Quaresma hits the follow-up and Ochoa saves.
Moutinho clipped the ball back in and Pepe was offside. NO GOAL! Well done, VAR. Replays suggest it was spot on.
GOAL! We think. Ronaldo rattles the bar with a shot. 22' Pepe score as it comes back in but it has been ruled out by the VAR machine.
20' He does. But he hits the wall. Probably didn't have enough juice to beat Ochoa anyway.
19' Quaresma fouled by Guardado. Central but too far out for a shot...unless you're Cristiano Ronaldo, of course! He might fancy this one.
18' Borussia Dortmund's Raphael Guerreiro scoops one towards Ronaldo but it's way too far and Ronaldo barely gives chase.
17' Quaresma from outside the box. He gets the ball onto his left but strikes wide. Ochoa dives but he had it covered and the dive was more of a safety measure.
Jimenez, striker for Benfica and formerly Atletico Madrid, gets in behind the back four but he's offside. Mexico looking really dangerous at times.
15' Vela wins a corner for Portugal. He's lucky too that it came off a Portugal player last as he swung a kick at it and missed.
14' Layun takes it down the left. Jimenez gets it as it's swng across the field to him. Still no dice against that Portuguese defense.
12' Mexic full of energy up front on and off the ball. They are pressing Portugal relentlessly when given the chance.
10' portugal starting to gain a grip on this one.
8' Nani catches an elbow to the head and hits the ground. Play stops as he gathers his composure. He went into the aerial duel with Hector Moreno.
Guardado hits it but it catches Fonte in the wall and then hits a Mexico player before going out for a restart.
Vela makes a move into the danger area and he is fouled by Nani. Slightly awkward angle to shoot from with the free but might be worth considering.
Mexico have started the better here. Nothing to show for it though as Portugal's defense standing tall.
Jimenez caught offside as he battles with Pepe for the ball. ice header on by Chicharito.
Chicarito bundled over and wins a free. Lively start by Mexico. Cedric the perp n the foul!
Pepe plays it forward to Ronaldo but his flick can only find a Mexico player.
1' We are underway! Mexico the team who get us underway. They'll be hoping it's the last time they kick-off tonight.
A minute's silence held for those who perished in the Portuguese fires recently.
The national anthems have been sung and handshakes exchanged! Ready for action.
It will be interesting to see if the talk surrounding the reigning Ballon d'Or winner will affect his performance tonight.
Javier Tebas came out and publicly backed Cristiano Ronaldo. "Knowing those around him, and how professional they are, I'm positive that Cristiano is innocent. We live at a time when any news about Spain's Tax Office means everyone is a fraudster. I'm sure he's innocent. From what I've read, I'm sure he hasn't committed any crime".
Manchester City new boy Bernardo Silva is not playing either!
Ronaldo before the warm-up* *This is not Ronaldo..
No irving Lozano in Mexico's starting XI. The Pachuca striker has been linked with a move to Celta Vigo recently.
And the Mexico starting line-up: Ochoa, Salcedo, Reyes, Moreno, Layun, Dos Santos, Herrera, Guardado, Vela, Jimenez and Hernández.
Here's the Portugal XI: Patrício, Cédric, Pepe, Fonte, Guerreiro, Moutinho, William Carvalho, André Gomes, Ricardo Quaresma, Cristiano Ronaldo and Nani
In case you missed it, here's our look at five players you should be keeping your beady eye on at the Confederations Cup.
Russia and New Zealand opened up the 2017 edition of the competition yesterday in Saint Petersburg, with the hosts sealing a 2-0 victory. Here's how it happened.
Why not get yourself started with a read of our match preview?
Portugal vs Mexico live stream online: match preview
The second game in the Confederations Cup takes place on Sunday June 18th and Portugal take on Mexico in a battle the pits two former teammates at Real Madrid and goalscoring juggernauts for their respective nations, Javier Hernandez against Cristiano Ronaldo, against each other.
The two sides have played each other twice in recent mamory and Portugal emerged victorious on both occasions by a single goal. In 2006' World Cup, Maniche and Simao's early strikes helped them to a 2-1 win despite a Francisco Fonseca goal shortly after.
In a 2014 friendly in Foxboro Stadium, now named MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, Bruno Alves gave Portugal victory with the game's only goal.
Fernando Santos' attacking options are of the highest quality considering the form their talisman has shown over the course of the last 12 months. A.C Milan new man, Andre Silva is considered his heir to the throne and with Gelson Martins and Nani's speed to create width, they will be a force to be reckoned with.
Add Manchester City's new signing, Bernardo Silva, Barcelona's Andre Gomes and highly-rated Willy Carvalho into a midfield that can defend and create in equal measure and Portugal are potent and compact enough to stick around deep into the competition.
The news surrounding Ronaldo and his issues with the Spanish tax authorities mixed with recent reports that he is set to leave Spain could cause lesser mortals to take their eye off the ball and lose concentration but don't count on it as the reigning Ballon d'Or winner has proven in the past that he enjoys highly-pressurised environments.
Defensively, Pepe remains their stalwart and he is currently playing for his future after he announced that he would leave Real Madrid in the summer. He was believed to be close to a PSG move but they only offered him one year and will be looking to draw attention to his performance and ability to continue for another couple of years at the Confederations Cup.
Juan Carlos Osorio's spell in charge of El Tri has been a successful one. They have lost just twice in 24 games and drawn four. One of those beatings, however, came against Chile when they were thrashed 7-0 in last year's Copa America. With Chile as favourites to win the competition, they will be hoping if they make it into the latter stages of the competition, a repeat of that game will not occur.
Javier Hernandez cooled off on the goalscoring front for Bayer Leverkusen last year but he remains lethal for Mexico, scoring twice in his last four games and chipping in with another assist.
Hirving Lozano, previously linked with the likes of Manchester United, could be on the move to Celta Vigo according to reports recently, and he will be tasked with offering himself as a decoy for Hernandez, who tends to receive most attention from defenders in Mexico's attack.
Carlos Vela recently was linked with a move back to Mexico and his goal against USA that helped them to a draw will ensure he starts in Osorio's XI to play Portugal after a decent year with Real Sociedad in Spain's top flight.
Guillermo Ochoa insists Mexico are not only concerned with Cristian Ronaldo and says his side are focused on what they want to do on the field and what the manager is looking for from them.
The former Granada foalkeeper said, "We have confidence in our team and in what Mexico can do and we are sure that we can compete with any other national team," he said. "Those that are here are here to compete and to look to try to get to the final, which is Mexico's objective."
Portugal vs Mexico live stream: possible line-ups
Portugal XI: Rui Patricio, Cedric, Fonte, Bruno Alves, Guerreiro, William, Gelson, Moutinho, André Gomes, Nani, Cristiano
Coach: Fernando Santos
Mexico XI: Ochoa, Salcedo, Diego Reyes, Araujo, Moreno, Jonathan, Herrera, Guardado, Vela, Chicharito, Fabián
Coach: Juan Carlos Osorio
Portugal vs Mexico live stream online: betting odds
Portugal are the bookies' favourites to get off to a winning start, with the European champions priced at €2 per euro placed to take the points. Mexico, meanwhile, are valued at €4 per buck wagered to begin with a victory.
Follow the live coverage match of semi-final Confederations Cup between: Germany vs Mexico