Mexico continued their quest to defend their Concacaf Gold Cup title, casting aside a depleted Honduras squad during a 3-0 quarterfinal win on Saturday evening before a record crowd for soccer at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.
Mexico fans were left fuming after Rogelio Funes Mori opened the scoring in the 26th minute, but was called offside following the completion of the play, leaving the striker wagging his finger in disbelief. But the Monterrey star delivered six minutes later after Luis Rodriguez curled a perfect cross, heading the ball onto the far post and in to establish a 1-0 lead for El Tri.
Mexico didn't stop there, as LA Galaxy midfielder Jonathan dos Santos took advantage of a badly-cleared ball from the Honduran defense to volley home a shot from atop the 18-yard box. That gave Mexico a 2-0 advantage in the 31st minute.
Once again, Honduras paid for a bad clearance and Mexico found a third goal in the 38th minute. Jesus Corona's cross found Orbelin Pineda off the counterattack, and Pineda powerfully headed home to give El Tri a substantial advantage heading into halftime. All three goals were scored in a 12-minute span.
Another would-be Mexico goal was called offside in the second half. A cross from Dos Santos to Funes Mori provided a dangerous opportunity on goal, but veteran midfielder Hector Moreno was in an offside position.
Unable to create anything of considerable danger, Honduras conceded the 3-0 loss. The reigning Gold Cup champions now await the winner of Sunday's quarterfinal match between Costa Rica and Canada.
- 26' – MEX – Rogelio Funes Mori
- 31' – MEX – Jonathan dos Santos
- 38' – MEX – Orbelin Pineda
- THE BIG PICTURE: Mexico were never in danger, as Tata Martino's squad applied the pressure early and went up 3-0 by halftime. El Tri then cruised into their Gold Cup semifinal spot, continuing the road to defend their title.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: Jonathan dos Santos took full advantage of a poorly-cleared ball to shock everyone with a low shot toward the far post. The LA Galaxy midfielder's volley put El Tri up 2-0 over a stunned Honduran side.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: For a squad that some said lacked a striker, Rogelio Funes Mori has done his part to assure Mexico's presence in the Gold Cup semifinals. He found the opening goal via a headed effort after a previous effort was ruled offside.
- MEX: Concacaf Gold Cup semifinals vs. TBD | Thursday, June 29 | 10 pm ET (FS1)
- HON: End of tournament