New Zealand vs. Mexico
Tuesday, July 5th 2011, 20.45 CET
I have to say, I didn’t watch this match entirely. But just like in the England vs. Japan one, my bet didn’t pay off. I was so relaxed when I saw that with 10 minutes to go, Mexico was still 2 goals ahead that I really didn’t care checking the score any more. And then what do you know? IT FINISHED 2 -2 !! New Zealand’s goals were scored in the 90th and 94th minutes of play! Well, anyway, none of these teams would have qualified, whatever the result (given that England defeated Japan, read about it here)
The Mexicans started the game very aggressively, scoring twice in the first half hour. It was a great start for them, but their enthousiasm quickly faded after hearing in the 15 minute that England had scored in the other game. Nevertheless, the first Mexican goal came in the 2nd minute of play. Stephanie Mayor came towards the New Zeeland goal from the right, and managed to get the ball between the legs of the goalkeeper from a short range. It was a wonderful team effort and a great boost for the Mexican team.
New Zealand tried to retaliate, but it took them more than 20 minutes before a clear chance could be seen. Midway through the second half, Rosie White had a shot at the goal, but Santiago streched to clear it. The ball reached Amber Hearn, who shot it wide on the rebound. Moments later, on the counter-attack and with the New Zeeland defense all over the place, Dominguez got a long ball from way back and caught it in a good position, sending it calmly past the goalkeeper. It was the 29th minute, and it marked Mexico’s second goal of the match.
The rest of the first half and well in the second half, the New Zeeland girls took charge and got better organized at the midfield. Santiago’s goal was tried several times, with the Mexican team seemingly tired or disinterested in carrying on planned attacks. It all seemed set in the 89th minute of play, with the Mexicans cooly staying in their own half and doing their best to keep the New Zeelanders away. However, Rebecca Smith headed a corner right into the net in the 90th minute of play and gave the team a tiny drop of hope. That paid off, since just moments before the final whistle, Hannah Wilkinson took advantage of the confusion in the Mexican penalty area to score at mid altitude past Santiago.
It was a dramatic ending, both for Mexico and for my 2-unit bet!