FIFA World Cup: Mexico closes in on last 16 with win over South Korea


Posted at Jun 24 2018 01:05 AM

South Korea's Hwang Hee-chan and Mexico's Carlos Salcedo in action at the FIFA World Cup at Rostov Arena, Rostov-on-Don, Russia on Saturday. Marko Djurica, Reuters

ROSTOV-ON-DON, Russia—Carlos Vela's penalty and a superbly taken breakaway goal by Javier Hernandez gave Mexico a 2-1 World Cup Group F win over South Korea on Saturday, which put El Tri on the brink of a place in the last 16.

Mexico, shock winners over Germany in their opening game, went ahead in the 26th minute when Vela sent goalkeeper Cho Hyun-woo the wrong way from the spot after Andres Guardado's cross hit the outstretched arm of Jang Hyun-soo at close range.

Hernandez added the second in the 66th minute, cutting inside his marker before guiding the ball home to finish off a lightning counter-attack after Mexico won the ball deep in their own half. Son Heung-min pulled one back for South Korea in stoppage time with a spectacular left-foot strike from outside the area.

Mexico lead with six points from two games while South Korea have lost both matches and have only a remote mathematical chance of progressing. Germany (no points) face Sweden (three) later on Saturday. (Reporting by Brian Homewood, editing by Ed Osmond)

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