Portugal and Mexico played out an entertaining 2-2 draw in their opening FIFA Confederations Cup Russia 2017 match in front of a crowd of 34,372 at the Kazan Arena on Sunday evening.
An evenly contested first half saw Portugal take the lead through Ricardo Quaresma after a fine set-up by captain Cristiano Ronaldo. Just before the break, Javier Hernandez equalised for Mexico after heading home Carlos Vela’s cross at the near post.
The European champions look to have won this Group A encounter in closing stages after Cedric restored their lead, but Mexico earned a share of the spoils when Hector Moreno headed home Jonathan Dos Santos’s corner in injury time.
FIFA.com team reporter analysis
“When Quaresma opened the scoring, Fernando Santos’s belief in a more experienced front line seemed to have paid off, but that initial shine faded in the second half. And then, from nothing, right wingback Cedric pounced. And this is where Portugal come alive. Their speed on the flanks is deadly, as it proved today. Portugal will be disappointed with the draw, but it’s a fair result, considering their performance.”
Marco Monteiro Silva, Portugal team reporter
“At the end of the day, Mexico can’t feel too disappointed with this result. While they dominated possession in long stretches of the game, Portugal generated the most dangerous chances and seemed to be the best side throughout. However, Moreno’s opportunistic header gave the team a good point to build upon, with New Zealand and Russia looming on the horizon.”
Martin Langer, Mexico team reporter
Budweiser Man of the Match
As influential as ever, Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo played his part in earning his side a point in Kazan on Sunday. The Real Madrid star set up the opening goal with a sublime pass that eluded three Mexican defenders.