Mexico vs Ecuador result: Pressure mounts on Tata Martino, as El Tri's scoring problems persist in 0-0 draw -

Mexico vs Ecuador result: Pressure mounts on Tata Martino, as El Tri’s scoring problems persist in 0-0 draw

With only five months left until the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, Mexico manager Gerardo “Tata” Martino has a scoring problem on his hands. For the second consecutive match against World Cup-caliber opposition, El Tri were shut out in a 0-0 draw against Ecuador in a friendly played in Chicago’s Soldier Field.

Ecuador created the better of the chances and arguably did enough to find the back of the net. But the referee blew his whistle to halt one first-half attacking sequence for an alleged foul committed on a Mexican defender. And then Mexico goalkeeper Memo Ochoa had a miraculous stop on a Romario Ibarra chance that looked destined for the back of the net.

Mexico didn’t create much: The movements in attack weren’t sharp and the ideas weren’t coherent. Jesus Manuel “Tecatito” Corona ran onto a cross in the box in the 14th minute, but he sent his shot right at the goalkeeper and was injured in the process. In the second half, it was star striker Raul Jimenez with another chance, but his shot was tired and way off the mark, mirroring a similar chance against Uruguay.

Winger Alexis Vega, who was a catalyst in past Mexico matches, offered very little. And Uriel Antuna, who replaced Tecatito Corona, was never a threat with his speed. On a lone run into the Ecuador box, Antuna took a tumble in the box hoping for a penalty and Tata Martino was animated on the sideline pleading for the call. After the match Martino reiterated that “it should have been called a penalty.”

Mexico needed an own goal to beat Nigeria on May 28 (2-1), and then El Tri was subsequently shut out in two consecutive matches against South American opponents: a 3-0 loss against Uruguay (June 2) and Sunday’s 0-0 against Ecuador. They hit the target on eight shots combined across all three matches.

The public pressure will only mount on manager Gerardo “Tata” Martino, who now has to prepare for Mexico’s two opening CONCACAF Nations League contests that will count in the standings. The likes of Suriname (June 11) and Jamaica (June 14) will present challenges to a Mexico team that clearly suffered against Ecuador’s physical play.

“Raul [Jimenez] had a chance in each game [vs. Uruguay and vs. Ecuador],” Martino told TUDN postgame. “From my point of view, he took his chance well, but it went a little wide. … I’m worried up to a certain point. The most important thing is to have him in the best [scoring] form in November [for the World Cup].”

“We had clear opportunities on goal and we need to finish them,” veteran Hector Herrera told TUDN. “We have to keep working and we have to refine the attack, but the results will come. We’re on the right track.”

Following Sunday’s draw, Ecuador head to Fort Lauderdale to face Cape Verde in their final tuneup of this window (June 11).

MORE: Complete FIFA World Cup schedule, groups times and matchups

Mexico vs. Ecuador final score

  1H 2H Final
Mexico 0 0 0
Ecuador 0 0 0


Mexico vs Ecuador live updates, highlights from World Cup friendly

Final: Mexico 0, Ecuador 0

95th min.: SUBS Ecuador — Ecuador kill some more time by bringing on Alan Franco for Moises Caicedo.

90th min.: Six minutes of stoppage time.

89th min.: SUBS Mexico — Santi Gimenez replaces Raul Jimenez, who finishes without a goal once again. Luis Romo comes in for Andres Guardado. Both subs are probably way too late to help Mexico.

85th min.: The match is back underway with a re-do of the goal kick. 

81st min.: Homophobic chant is heard on an Ecuador goal kick and the match is momentarily suspended by the officials.

77th min.: Mexico want a penalty. They say Pervis Estupinan fouled Uriel Antuna from behind in the box. Antuna went down, but he also embellished some. The referee points to the corner. No penalty given. And on the corner Gallardo’s volley from outside the box just barely misses the target.

70th min.: There it was for Mexico! Orbelin Pineda with the through ball for Raul Jimenez and his diagonal shot goes wide! Raul Jimenez definitely in crisis. Mexico needs him to eventually get back to showing a scoring touch or El Tri is in trouble in Qatar.

68th min.: SUBS Ecuador — Jhegson Mendez in for Jose Cifuentes in midfield, and Jordy Caicedo replaces Michael Estrada at center forward. We’ll see if they bring more ideas than Mexico’s subs.

66th min.: CARD Mexico — The match is sloppy. Now it’s Jesus Gallardo who gets a yellow card for fouling Gonzalo Plata. Not a violent foul, but it stopped a promising attack. The match is dragging a bit and Ecuador subs are coming on.

60th min.: CARD Ecuador — Flare up! Teams come together in midfield! A Moises Caicedo kick from behind gets a yellow card, but the Mexican players didn’t appreciate it. Not in a friendly. Caicedo just whacks the player from behind.

58th min.: SUBS Mexico — The left-footed Luis Gerardo Chavez is in for Nene Beltran, and Orbelin Pineda comes in for Alexis Vega on the left wing. Mexico desperately needs some fresh energy and ideas.

51st min.: Ecuador chance! Gonzalo Plata puts it on a platter for Romario Ibarra whose header is wide. He had time and space to get that header on target.

46th min.: Second half is underway. And Nene Beltran is still on the field. The halftime break must’ve done well for him.

Halftime: Mexico 0, Ecuador 0

Halftime: No surprises about that first half. It’s physical and high energy out there, but Ecuador look to have more ideas up top, and they attack with more numbers.

Mexico’s defense was on its heels at times, and El Tri can thank the referee (calling a borderline foul) and then Memo Ochoa for a miraculous save to keep them at 0-0. Tecatito had the best look for Mexico, but he wound up injured on the play, and Nene Beltran might be the next one out for the second half as Ecuador’s physical play is leaving a mark.

41st min.: CARD Ecuador — Another hard foul by an Ecuador midfielder on Nene Beltran, who’s limping. The physical play could be taking its toll on Mexico, which might be forced into another sub.

39th min.: What a save by Memo! He denies Romario Ibarra on the goal line. It was an incredible stop … it looked like the ball was in.

35th min.: Raul Jimenez with a rabona cross in the box! It was a beauty, but Alexis Vega couldn’t beat his defender to the ball. Moments later Vega and Antuna fail to communicate on a breakaway. The Mexico attack is still off. It doesn’t look much better than against Uruguay, although it’s getting more space.

34th min.: CARD Ecuador — This time it’s Carlos Gruezo slamming into the back of Andres Guardado to prevent a counter. Automatic yellow.

26th min.: CARD Mexico — Yellow for Andres Guardado, who takes out Jose Cifuentes, who turned and was getting ready to launch the counter. Ecuador is dangerous in transition. Good yellow for the Mexico captain.

26th min.: SUB Mexico — It’s official. Antuna on for the injured Tecatito.

25th min.: Ecuador chance! Moises Caicedo takes on Nestor Araujo 1-on-1 and gets a shot off, but Hector Moreno is there to block the shot in the Mexico box. Meanwhile, Tecatito can’t go any more. Antuna getting ready to come on.

18th min.: Ecuador put the ball in the back of the net, but there was a whistle before Gonzalo Plata touched it home. Michael Estrada was called for a foul on Nestor Araujo, though it looked like he may have stripped him clean.

14th min.: Big chance for Mexico. Tecatito Corona has the goal at his mercy as he runs onto a cross, and he sends the ball straight at the ‘keeper. Tecatito clashes with a defender in the process, and he’s hurting, getting treatment on his right leg on the endline.

8th min.: What! Header by Andres Guardado in the Ecuador box on a cross from right back Jorge Sanchez. It was right at goalkeeper Alexander Dominguez, who had the easy stop.

5th min.: Lots of energy to start the match with both teams getting into the box. Raul Jimenez had his shot blocked on one end, and Gonzalo Plata’s cross in the Mexico box was deflected by Memo Ochoa on the other end.

1st min.: El Tri vs. La Tri is underway. Big occasion for Hector Herrera.

1 min from kickoff: The captain’s are at midfield for the formalities. Andres Guardado (Mexico) and goalkeeper Alexander Dominguez (Ecuador) exchanging pleasantries.

5 mins from kickoff: National anthem time. Ecuador up first.

15 mins from kickoff: A capacity crowd is expected at Soldier Field.

MORE: All about Mexico’s opponents in World Cup Group C

Mexico vs Ecuador lineups

Tata Martino changed the entire lineup from the Nigeria match (May 28) to the Uruguay loss (June 2) except for Cesar Montes, who started both matches. The Monterrey center back gets a breather with another set of wholesale changes.

The Mexico coach has a large squad at his disposal, and although versatile defender Julio Cesar “Cata” Dominguez is back after a bout with COVID-19, he is not in the squad given his absence from recent training sessions.

With the delicate moment his team is experiencing a mere months away from the World Cup, Martino opts for veterans Andres Guardado and Hector Herrera to anchor the midfield. The presence of steady center backs Hector Moreno and Nestor Araujo could also help the back line feel settled. 

Mexico lineup (4-3-3, left to right): Guillermo Ochoa (GK) — Jesus Gallardo, Hector Moreno, Nestor Araujo, Jorge Sanchez — Andres Guardado, Hector Herrera, Fernando Beltran — Alexis Vega, Raul Jimenez, Tecatito Corona

Mexico subs (12): Alfredo Talavera (GK), Rodolfo Cota (GK), Johan Vasquez, Cesar Montes, Luis Chavez, Erick Aguirre, Luis Romo, Sebastian Cordova, Orbelin Pineda, Santi Gimenez, Uriel Antuna, Diego Lainez

Mexico players not in matchday squad (14): Carlos Acevedo (GK), Israel Reyes, Julian Araujo, Julio Cesar Dominguez, Jesus Angulo, Gerardo Arteaga, Kevin Alvarez, Erick Gutierrez, Edson Alvarez, Erik Lira, Rodolfo Pizarro, Roberto Alvarado, Marcelo Flores, Henry Martin

Ecuador manager Gustavo Alfaro promised that more than half the team would be switched up for Mexico, as he continues to experiment and allow other players to recover. And he was a man of his word, with right back Angelo Preciado picking up a knock against Nigeria.

Forward Jordy Caicedo and veteran midfielder Carlos Gruezo were late additions to the squad, and Gruezo gets the start at the heart of midfield.

Ecuador lineup (4-3-3, left to right): 22-Alexander Dominguez (GK) — 7-Pervis Estupinan, 3-Piero Hincapie, 4-Robert Arboleda, 14-Xavier Arreaga — 23-Moises Caicedo, 8-Carlos Gruezo, 5-Jose Cifuentes — 10-Romario Ibarra, 11-Michael Estrada, 19-Gonzalo Plata.

Ecuador subs (12): 1-Hernan Galindez (GK), 12-Moises Ramirez (GK), 2-Felix Torres, 6-Byron Castillo, 18-Diego Palacios, 20-Jhegson Mendez, 21-Alan Franco, 16-Jeremy Sarmiento, 15-Angel Mena, 13-Enner Valencia, 17-Jordy Caicedo, 9-Leonardo Campana.

Ecuador players not in matchday squad (5): Jackson Porozo, Angelo Preciado, Dixon Arroyo, Alexander Alvarado, Djorkaeff Reasco.

MORE: Complete match schedule, times & stadiums for 2022 World Cup 

Mexico vs Ecuador TV channel, live stream

  • Date: Sunday, June 5
  • Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
  • TV channel: Univision, TUDN
  • Streaming: fuboTV, TUDN site & app

The match will be televised by Univision and TUDN live from Soldier Field in Chicago. Both channels are streamed on fuboTV.

A pro-Mexico crowd is expected in Chicago as is customary for El Tri’s matches in the Windy City.

MORE: Watch Mexico vs. Ecuador live on fuboTV (get access now)

Mexico vs Ecuador best bets, pick & prediction

Odds via Sports Interaction (Canada only)

In the betting market, Mexico is the favorite to bounce back from a difficult loss against Uruguay, but Ecuador will present similar challenges: physical play, quick transitions, and dangerous set-pieces.

And Mexico will probably still have some of the same scoring issues in attack that were evident against Uruguay. The absence of the injured Hirving “Chucky” Lozano, who is often the inspiration up top, is noticeable for Mexico.

There shouldn’t be much between these two sides, and Ecuador is dangerous enough that they could even pull off a narrow win against a Mexican side that will be under pressure to avoid another setback. Ecuador had the third-stingiest defense in South American qualifying (19 goals allowed in 18 matches).

The +0.25 Ecuador Asian handicap would be a winner in case of an Ecuador victory and a half win (and half push) in case of a draw.

Mexico Win +117
Draw +211
Ecuador Win +216
Both teams
to score Y / N
-132 / -119
Over / Under
2.5 goals
+104 / -143
Mexico -0.5 +119
Ecuador +0.5 -159

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