Martinique gave Mexico quite the fright Sunday evening at Bank of America Stadium in Charlotte, N.C., though El Tri ultimately secured a 3-2 win to wrap up Group A. With nine points from three wins, Mexico topped the group, but not without some jaw-dropping moments from Les Matinino.
First came a free-kick missile from one-time Seattle Sounders forward Kevin Parsemain that made it 2-1 in the 56th minute. Then, a snapped header from current Sounders midfielder Jordy Delem drew Martinique back, 3-2, in the 84th minute.
However, Mexico’s powerful offense did just enough, starting with LA Galaxy forward Uriel Antuna’s fourth goal of the Gold Cup. In the 29th minute, Antuna cut in on his left foot and squeaked one at the near post past Loic Chauvet.
El Tri also found net via a Raul Jimenez tap-in come the 61st minute, and what proved to be the game-winner from outside back Fernando Navarro in the 72nd minute.
Mexico outshot Martinique, 25-8, but couldn't put the game out of reach with several golden opportunities.
- 29' – MEX – Uriel Antuna
- 56' – MTQ – Kevin Parsemain
- 61' – MEX – Raul Jimenez
- 72' – MEX – Fernando Navarro
- 84' – MTQ – Jordy Delem
- THE BIG PICTURE: The hunt for an eighth Gold Cup title remains alive and well for Mexico, and their march to the final will next go through the second-place side in Group B. Whether Costa Rica or Haiti slots onto El Tri’s schedule, head coach Tata Martino is surely none too pleased with the performance Sunday evening. Meanwhile, Martinique bows out of the tournament knowing they can go toe-to-toe with a regional giant.
- MOMENT OF THE MATCH: The term “golazo” is sometimes overused, but it certainly applied to Kevin Parsemain’s free kick in the 56th minute. Few goalkeepers around the world could have stopped the right-footed rocket, giving Martinique a moment to remember as they exit the Gold Cup.
- MAN OF THE MATCH: He drifted in and out of the match at times, but a fourth Gold Cup strike has Uriel Antuna firmly in the Golden Boot hunt. His grass-cutter was a clinical finish, too.
- MEX: Wednesday, June 29 vs. TBD | Gold Cup quarterfinal
- MTQ: Out of the Gold Cup