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Ochoa heroics ensured Mexico shared the spoils with Brazil

Brazil’s second match of the tournament was against the combative Mexican side, who won their first game against Cameroon. Mexico, successfully closed Brazil down in the first half though they couldn’t create much for themselves. It was a high octane match with the irrepressible Guillermo Ochoa, in goal for Mexico, pulling off two magnificent saves from Neymar and Paulinho. Neymar, who was buzzing all around the Mexican area with intent, was closely marshaled by the experienced Mexican defence.

The first half ended goalless, with Ramires who had started in the place of Hulk, getting the only caution. The card must have played a part in the Coach’s decision to introduce Bernard in his place for the second 45 minutes.

Brazil was eager to impress after their unconvincing display against Croatia. Bernard’s pace on the right almost created the first goal in the 48th minute but the Mexican defender headed away from the on rushing Neymar. The Mexicans kept sending their long range efforts on Julio Cesar’s goal, with the shots going agonisingly over the crossbar.

On the 67th minute Jo was brought on for the ineffective Fred, who had toiled all evening. Ochoa pulled off another spectacular save from Neymar moments after, as Brazil kept pushing for the elusive goal.

Mexico showed their intent by bringing on Manchester United’s forward Javier Hernandes for Peralta. Bernard’s pass released Jo, who went wide in a hurried effort at goal. Mexico brought on Fabian for Herrera, to add fresh legs to the midfield. Hernandes’ pace started unsettling the Brazilian defence with David Luiz and Thiago Silva fouling him. The Brazilian Captain’s foul earned him a caution and the Mexicans a free kick which was wasted by Dos Santos.

Mexico brought on Jimenez for Dos Santos while for Brazil, Willian came on for Oscar. Ochoa wasn’t done yet, saving the best for last and pulling off another spectacular save from a Thiago Silva point blank header. The deserved man of the match, wouldn’t stay a free agent for long with this kind of performance at the biggest stage. Julio Cesar was equally alert to save from the fresh Jimenez as the clock ticked down.

The game ended Brazil 0: Mexico 0; a deserved defensive masterclass from Mexico. The second goalless draw of the 2014 FIFA World Cup, unlike the group F match between Nigeria and Iran, turned out to be a thrilling encounter despite the lack of goals.


About Kene Okoye

A creative writer, banker, pianist, composer and music promoter, Kene documents events and presents his viewpoint in compelling narratives. He sets out to create vivid pictures with his intelligent use of words and seeks to engage, thrill, educate and inspire the reader. Come on and enjoy yourself.

One comment

  1. Ochoa’s saves reminded me of Vincent Enyeama’s spectacular performance during our match with Iran. I wondered how the match officials voted Mikel as the man of the match instead of Enyeama. My brother, the write up gave a very good analysis of the match.
    I hope that Cameroon will do Africa proud today by winning their match to join Ivory Coast. I wish all the countries the best and in particular Nigeria.

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