A scrappy Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez goal in stoppage time turned what looked like a sure draw into a 2-1 win for Mexico over Bosnia & Herzegovina.
Fans in Chicago's Soldier Field didn't have to wait until the end for all the action, though. Giovani Dos Santos kicked things off early, scoring in the sixth minute. Aldo De Nigris latched onto a long ball, turned sharply in the box to shake his marker and blasted a low shot from a narrow angle. Bosnia goalkeeper Asmir Begovic spilled the rebound, and Dos Santos tapped past him.
Seconds later Haris Medunjanin nearly equalized. His side-footed shot came off a corner and looked headed toward the bottom corner before being deflected wide at the last moment.
Bosnia kept pushing. A quarter hour in Guillermo Ochoa, one of the goalkeeper being rotated by coach Jose Manuel de la Torre, pulled off two smart saves to stake his claim to the starting berth. First he pawed away a near-post blast from Edin Dzeko and then from the corner he blocked Boris Pandza's attempt.
With the insistent rain and drenched field, playes kept committing mistakes. Dos Santos missed an easy chance to double his tally when Begovic spilled again. Then, the Mexican defense collapsed and a feign allowed the ball to roll through unmolested to put Dzeko clear on goal. The Manchester City striker rounded Ochoa to equalize.
Much of the rest of the game was sloppy.
Both Andres Guardado and Hernandez made half-hour cameos in their respective returns from injury. Seconds before Chicharito entered the game, De Nigris scored from a fractionally offside position.
Hernandez's strike half an hour later stood up. Ognjen Vranjes attempted a bicycle kick to clear the ball out of his box. Instead it trickled invitingly in front of his goalmouth, where Hernandez reacted quickest to score.
The international friendly was the second of three for El Tri in the United States. Previously, Mexico beat Wales 2-0 in New Jersey's MetLife Stadium. It will play Brazil in Dallas on June 3.
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- Giovani Dos Santos
- Aldo De Nigris
- Asmir Begovic