Gold Cup: Chicharito leads Mexico in 5-0 rout of El Salvador
ARLINGTON, Texas — In front of a loud and rowdy sold-out crowd of
80,108 at Cowboys Stadium, defending CONCACAF Gold Cup champions Mexico
defeated El Salvador 5-0 as Manchester United star Javier “Chicharito”
Hernández scored a hat trick on opening night.
On the strength of an avalanche of four second-half goals registered in
the span of 20 minutes, Mexico matched the 5-0 result that Costa Rica
registered against Cuba in the first match of the doubleheader. The
identical results leave Mexico and Costa Rica as joint leaders of Group A
after the first of three matches in group play.
Entering the 2011 edition of the Gold Cup, El Tri had scored more goals
in the regional tournament (103) than any other team and on Sunday
night they added five more to that total, picking up where they left off
in 2009 when they routed the USA 5-0 in the Gold Cup final.
El Salvador challenged Mexico for the game’s first 50 minutes, limiting
their opponents’ opportunities while creating a handful of dangerous
ones for themselves. However, los Cuscatlecos could not convert on any of their chances.
With the pressure mounting, Mexico needed a stroke of fortune to
finally break through, as Efraín Juárez converted a cross from teammate
and winger Giovani dos Santos. His first shot was blocked by El Salvador
goalkeeper Miguel Montes, only for the rebound to fall right on
Juárez’s head for the opening goal on 55 minutes.
The second goal came just three minutes later as second-half substitute
Aldo de Nigris found the back of the net within a minute of coming into
the match. He ran onto his own pass in the El Salvador penalty area,
outrunning the defenders to the ball before slotting past Montes for a
commanding 2-0 lead.
With El Salvador reeling to recover the ball from Mexico’s grasp midway
in the second half, the 23-year-old “Chicharito” Hernández scored twice
more to seal the win. First he bounced home a header off a cross from
Andrés Guardado and then took another Guardardo feed, shielded a
defender and sent the ball into the back of the net from close range.
The Mexican national team idol completed the scoring and his hat trick
with a penalty kick after El Salvador’s Marvin González was shown red
for taking down Hernández as he broke in on goal. Chicharito stepped up
himself and chipped a ball down the center of the goal to put the final
exclamation mark on the 5-0 win.
New York Red Bulls defender Rafael Márquez came on as a second-half
substitute for Mexico with the result already in hand while Real Salt
Lake forward Arturo Alvarez missed the match for El Salvador due to
injury. Portland Timbers right back Steve Purdy was available but did
not come into the match for El Salvador.
Both teams now travel to Charlotte, N.C., for games at Bank of American
Stadium on Thursday evening. Costa Rica face El Salvador and Mexico
play Cuba following the first game.
MEX – Juárez 55’
MEX – De Nigris 58’
MEX – Hernández 60’
MEX – Hernández 67’
MEX – Hernández 95’ (PK)
Disciplinary Summary: MEX-F. Rodríguez (caution) 26’, MEX-J. Hernández (caution) 28’, SLV-D. Alas (caution) 62’, SLV-M. González (ejection) 93’
Mexico (4-4-2, left to right): GK #1
Guillermo Ochoa - #3 Carlos Salcido, #15 Hector Moreno, #2 Francisco
Rodriguez, #16 Efrain Juárez -- #10 Giovanni dos Santos (69’ Rafael
Márquez), #8 Israel Castro (57’ #9 Aldo De Nigris), #6 Gerardo Torrado,
#18 Andres Guardado (74’ #11 Ángel Reina) -- #7 Pablo Barrera, #14
Manager: Jose Manuel de la Torre
El Salvador (4-4-2, left to right): GK #1
Miguel Montes – #19 Reynaldo Hernández, #3 Marvin González (capt.), #23
Luis Alonso Anaya, #2 Moises Xavier García - #16 Jaime Enrique Alas, #5
Victor Turcios (62’ #21 G. Baires), #14 Dennis Alas, #20 Andres Flores
(68’ #6 S. Martin)-- #10 Eliseo Quintanilla, #11 Rodolfo Zelaya (79’ #9
Manager: Rubén Israel
Referee: Enrico Wijngaarde (Suriname)
Assistant Referees: Ricardo Morgan (Jamaica), C.J. Morgante (USA)
Fourth Official: Courtney Campbell (Jamaica)