2008 Apr 16

Mexico  1 - 0  China
Qwest Field, Seattle, WA

Mexico: Oswaldo Sanchez; Adrián Aldrete, Fausto Pinto, Leobardo López, Patricio Araujo; Antonio Naelson (Christian Bermúdez 89'), Jorge Hernández, Luis Ernesto Pérez, Sergio Amaury Ponce (Omar Esparza 62'); César Villaluz (Pablo Barrera 90'), Sergio Santana (Juan Carlos Cacho 74'). Substitutes not used: José de Jesús Corona, Alejandro Castro, Omar Trujillo, CArlos Gerardo Martínez, José Joel González

China: Song Zhenyu; Wang Xiao (Wu Hao 18'), Sun Ji, Cao Yang, Xin Feng; Hu Zhaojun (Li Jianhua 53'), Wu Wei'an (Lu Feng 71'), Xiao Zhanbo (Li Yan 62'), Zhao Junzhe (Yang Lin 83'); Gao Lin, Qu Bo (Wang Song 74'). Substitutes not used: Li Shuai.

14' MEX: Villaluz (Santana)

Additional match reports: Seattle Times, Everett Herald, Tacoma News Tribune, SeattleFC.com (AP story), Seattle P-I (report on the fans, with pictures).

Match report from Ron Stickney:

A crowd of 56,416, almost all Mexicans, watched the Mexico national team win 1-0 over the China national team in a friendly at Qwest Field in Seattle. The size of the crowd exceeded probably everyone's high-end expectations.

The Mexican defense were the stars of the match, preventing any shots by China until the late minutes. The Mexican offense was just good enough to win, with César Villaluz scoring the lone goal early.

Mexico should have opened their account before the match was 2 minutes old. Chinese goalkeeper Song Zhenyu went up for a ball at the spot but misjudged it, allowing Villaluz to claim the leftovers in front of goal. He only tapped his shot at the seemingly open net, allowing a defender to recover in time to clear it wide.

The yellow card came out only twice, in the 7th and 8th minutes, first for China's Hu Zhaojun for a very late tackle attempt, then for Mexico's Luis Ernesto Pérez for the same reason.

The wave was started in the 13th minute, and Mexico responded with a goal the next minute. A free kick was served into the penalty area, where Sergio Santana won it and served a short diagonal pass in front of goal for Villaluz, who blasted a high shot just under the crossbar.

A couple of minutes later Antonio Naelson tried to double the lead with a sharp header on goal, saved by Zhenyu with a dive.

Mexico took 8 shots in the half and allowed none by China. The final chance was a good one when Santana was sprung past a defender to try a chip over Zhenyu from the spot, but the ball settled on the roof of the goal.

The Mexican defense continued to stifle the Chinese attackers until the late minutes. Mexican forwards Villaluz and Santana had a few good chances, but Zhenyu made the saves.

China's first shot came at 84', but it lacked speed and was aimed a bit wide, easy pickings for goalkeeper Oswaldo Sanchez, who never had to make a save.

China's first and only corner kick came in added time at the end of the match, and it produced their best chance to score. Out from the near post, a Chinese attacker skied to try a glancing header towards the far post, but it wasn't on frame and after a second of danger the loose ball was cleared by the Mexican defense.

           Mexico    China
Shots:       17        3
Saves:        0        6
Corners:      3        1
Fouls:       10        9
Offsides:     8        1

7' CHI: Zhaojun cautioned
8' MEX: Pérez cautioned


Attendance: 56,416!