Mexico Made to Regret Penalty Miss in 1-0 Loss to Venezuela (Copa América)

Mexico misses the chance to seal qualification for the quarter final by suffering defeat to Venezuela.
Venezuela v Mexico - CONMEBOL Copa America USA 2024
Venezuela v Mexico - CONMEBOL Copa America USA 2024 / Jam Media/GettyImages

Mexico took on Venezuela as part of their second Copa América group stage game after starting with a 1-0 win over Jamaica.

Starting in the perfect manner, confidence was high as El Trí faced a Venezuela side who also won their opening match of the competition, coming from behind to beat Ecuador 2-1 in Santa Clara, California.

Jaime Lozano made one change from the win against the Reggae Boyz, replacing the injured Edson Álvarez, who suffered a hamstring injury in the opening game and will now miss the rest of the Copa. Replacing the West Ham United player was Cruz Azul midfielder Carlos Rodríguez, to accompany Luis Chavez and Luis Romo in the middle of the park.

The first half ended in frustration for Mexico. Dominating the game, the best chance fell to Santi Giménez who had a one-on-one but scuffed his chance, providing a sigh of relief for the Venezuelans. Up the other end, Pachuca star Salomón Rondón was only denied by the post as he struck from distance despite going away from goal.

Venezuela picked up momentum and looked like a much-improved side for the second half, forcing Mexico goalkeeper Julio González into action to prevent the opening goal of the game from falling in favour of the South American side.

The game-changing moment came moments before the hour mark when Venezuela worked the ball nicely down the right, with the ball falling to Real Sociedad defender Jon Aramburu. Racing into the box, the right-back was brought down by Julián Quiñones giving the referee no choice but to point to the spot.

Up stepped Rondón who sent González the wrong direction to give his country the lead over the country in which he plays his domestic football.

The goal meant that Venezuela would go onto 6 points, meaning that they would qualify for the next round, regardless of what happens against Jamaica in their final group game. As for Mexico, a defeat would mean they would fall behind Ecuador in the group and they would need to beat them in the final game to join Venezuela in the next round.

El Trí would be given a great opportunity to go into the final game with the advantage over Ecuador when they were gifted a penalty just two minutes before the end. A Jorge Sánchez effort was blocked by the hand of Miguel Navarro with the referee once again having an easy decision to make.

Orbellín Pineda stepped up to the plate for Mexico, with both Quiñones and Giménez taken off the pitch. Slotting his effort the the 'keepers right, Rafael Romo was able to make a comfortable save to painstakingly deny the AEK Athens man, pushing the penalty away for a Mexico corner.

That brought an end to the game, with Mexico failing to make an impact before the full-time whistle. Now, they must beat Ecuador on Sunday 30th June, at 18:00, if they have any ambitions of qualifying for the final eight.