CONCACAF outfit Mexico won their first and only game at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Trinidad and Tobago 4-0 against South Africa on Sunday. There was only ever going to be pride on the line in the contest from Couva with two previous losses rendering the combatants incapable of reaching the quarter-final stages.
Mexico started lively and got only their second goal of Trinidad and Tobago 2010 after 21 minutes. Daniela Solis chased a through ball which beat the South African back four, rounded Kaylin Swart and slid her shot home from a tight angle. The South Africans had a similar chance eight minutes later, but the Bantwana weren’t able to take advantage. Jermaine Seoposenwe latched onto a ball on the end of a quick counter-attack, but Mexican keeper Rosa Merida was fast off her line and able to clear the danger near the edge of the penalty area.
The Mexicans continued to press as the half wore on and were looking the far better side. Solis had another chance in the 31st minute but after collecting the ball from a defensive mix-up, she could only steer her point-blank shot into the arms of Swart. The South African keeper was being well worked. Just four minutes later she was sprawling to her left to dive away Andrea Sanchez’s free-kick.
The North Americans came out flying again in the second half. Solis rattled the crossbar with a strong effort just seconds after the restart and in the 52nd minute, the Mexicans were two up. A deep cross from Fernanda Pina out right was met perfectly by Sanchez, who nodded home.
With the green-clad girls in full control, they continued to pour on the pressure, and Christina Murillo made it three when she collected a short pass in the area and chipped the goalkeeper cheekily. They added one more in the 77th minute when Pina rose highest in the penalty area to nod the ball home. The result will have the Mexicans feeling a little better about their first-round exit from the U-17 finals, while South Africa head for home having conceded often, scored rarely and generally failing to show the kind of football needed at the top international level.