10-man Mexico cruised past 10-man El Salvador to remain top of the group in the road to 2022 QatarFIFA World Cup.
Hector Moreno and Wolve’s Raul Jimenez helped Mexico re-claim their three-point lead in CONCACAF World Cup qualifying with a 2-0 win away to El Salvador on Wednesday night.
Moreno headed in Jesus Corona’s 30th-minute corner before Premier League star Jimenez rounded out the win with a penalty in the third minute of stoppage time to seal all the three points in their bag.
Napoli’s Hirving Lozano put an early chance wide, while Osvaldo Rodriguez also pushed a header off target before Moreno broke the deadlock with a glancing effort which crept in at the back post.
Both sides were then reduced to 10 men, with El Salvador losing Mario Jacobo to a straight red card for a foul on Rogelio Funes Mori in the 48th minute.
Mexico saw central defender Nestor Araujo sent off with 23 minutes remaining for a second bookable offence, ruling him out of next month’s crucial qualifier against the United States in Cincinnati.
Wolves’ Jimenez cushioned the victory with his late spot-kick having returned to the national team last month after suffering a serious head injury in November last year putting him out of the football pitch for almost a year.
The win moved unbeaten Mexico to 14 points after six games, three points ahead of USA, who came from behind to beat Costa Rica 2-1 earlier on Wednesday.
The other match in this group saw Canada crush Panama 4-1 in Toronto to move to 10 points one point behind second placed USA and four points behind Mexico. In other matches, Jamaica managed a 2-0 win over bottom places Honduras who are yet to win a match in this group.
With the international break now over, players will return to their respective clubs. Mexico next travel to the United States on November 13, in what will be a crucial match as it will be a decider on who comes out on top of this group. That same day will see El Savador host Jamaica.