Mexico, Poland fail to capitalize as Ochoa denies Lewandowski his first World Cup aim


DOHA, Qatar — Mexico and Poland kicked off their 2022 World Cup run with a 0-0 draw on Tuesday.

In a packed Stadium 974 with 39,369 in attendance, Mexico dominated possession and had boisterous help all through the stands, however struggled to interrupt down a defensive Polish facet. Within the second half, a penalty in Poland’s favor appeared able to open up the scoresheet, earlier than Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa dramatically saved Robert Lewandowski‘s try within the 58th minute.

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With no objectives by the ultimate whistle and some extent every, Saudi Arabia are the present leaders of Group C after a shocking 2-1 end result over Argentina earlier within the day.

JUMP TO: Participant rankings | Greatest/worst performers | Highlights and notable moments | Publish-match quotes | Key stats | Upcoming fixtures

Fast Response

1. Guillermo Ochoa, as soon as once more, Mexico’s savior

Time and time once more, Mexico have actually been saved by Ochoa. After stepping up with essential performances within the 2014 and 2018 World Cups, Ochoa would make his mark as soon as once more after saving a penalty within the 58th minute from Lewandowski, sending the closely pro-Mexico crowd right into a frenzy.

El Tri weren’t in a position to reply on the opposite finish of the pitch and completed scoreless within the 0-0 draw, however the save from Ochoa undoubtedly felt simply as impactful as any aim {that a} participant may have scored that evening for Mexico.

Within the remaining group stage matches, anticipate the 37-year-old to as soon as once more be a useful determine in internet.

2. Poland and Mexico fail to distance themselves from Argentina

There was a buzz within the air from each Mexico and Poland followers about not solely their upcoming match, however the truth that group-favorites Argentina had fallen to a stunning 2-1 loss to Saudi Arabia earlier within the day. With the end result cemented for Argentina, each Mexico and Poland had a large alternative to place three factors between themselves and the South American giants.

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As an alternative of taking part in proactively, each prevented taking many dangers within the draw and now have only a one-point cushion over Argentina. Relying on how issues go within the group stage that has already turn out to be unpredictable, at the very least one of many two will doubtless remorse the chance on Tuesday to safe three factors.

3. Goalscoring points emerge for El Tri

Sadly for Mexico, Tuesday evening’s recreation felt like an ideal summarization of what has been a worrisome 12 months of their assault. As seen towards Poland, El Tri sometimes do a superb job of holding possession, switching the sector, however as soon as within the remaining third, they typically run out of concepts.

With the numerous quantity of possession they’d, it was disappointing to see the dearth of sufficient harmful goalscoring alternatives being created and likewise points with ending these probabilities. Tuesday’s end result is not the worst for El Tri, however they will not final lengthy within the group stage if nothing adjustments within the assault.

That stated, a silver-lining was Raul Jimenez‘s introduction into the second half. Lately again from a prolonged groin damage, Mexico’s No. 1 striker seemed almost at full health throughout his restricted time on the pitch.

Participant rankings (1 = worst, 10 = greatest)

Mexico: Guillermo Ochoa 9, Jorge Sanchez 6, Cesar Montes 6, Hector Moreno 5, Jesus Gallardo 7, Edson Alvarez 7, Hector Herrera 6, Luis Chavez 7, Hirving Lozano 8, Henry Martin 6, Alexis Vega 7

Subs: Raul Jimenez 6, Carlos Rodriguez 6, Uriel Antuna 6

Poland: Wojciech Szczęsny 7, Bartosz Bereszyński 5, Kamil Glik 6, Jakub Kiwior 7, Matty Money 7, Jakub Kamiński 6, Grzegorz Krychowiak 6, Sebastian Szymański 7, Nicola Zalewski 6, Piotr Zieliński 6, Robert Lewandowski 5

Subs: Krystian Bielik 6, Przemysław Frankowski 6, Arkadiusz Milik 6

Greatest and worst performers

BEST: Guillermo Ochoa

Who else however Ochoa? Within the defining second of the match, the Membership America goalkeeper stood tall and shut down the penalty alternative from Lewandowski.

WORST: Robert Lewandowski

Lacking the penalty alone was a lowlight, however so was his actual lack of attacking risk. Lewandowski is without doubt one of the biggest strikers on the earth, but additionally seemed removed from one on Tuesday.

Highlights and notable moments

Ochoa saving Lewandowski’s penalty is undeniably the speaking level of the match.

Robert Lewandowski’s miss may show pricey for Poland additional into the group stage.

After the match: What the gamers and managers stated

Mexico’s Ochoa: “It’s been awhile since I stopped a penalty. I’m grateful to help the national team.”

Poland’s Szczesny: “I congratulate him [Ochoa], because he made an unbelievable save.”

Key stats (supplied by ESPN Stats & Info)

– Ochoa fourth clear sheet in World Cups. Most for a Mexican goalkeeper. Pablo Larios had 3 in 1986.

– Mexico has failed to attain in every of the final 3 second halves on the World Cup wherein it was tied at halftime.

– Ochoa: 1st saved penalty kick with Mexico since 2017 Confederations Cup. He had conceded the final 9 PKs he’d confronted with Mexico.

Up subsequent

Mexico: El Tri face off on Nov. 26 towards an Argentina facet who can be determined for his or her first win a the 2022 World Cup, adopted by a match towards Saudi Arabia on Nov. 30.

Poland: Lewandowski & Co. face group C leaders Saudi Arabia subsequent on Nov. 26 adopted by a essential match towards Argentina on Nov. 30.

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