In only their third World Cup, Mexico’s women are still fighting to stay alive in a tournament where they haven't scored a win.
After games against Colombia and England, El Tri Femenil continue their World Cup campaign against France. Can they get a result? They need to if they’ll want any chance of progressing to the next stage.
Without a win, a first for Mexico at a World Cup, Mexico will be eliminated at the group stage of the tournament.
This would be a sad turn of events, considering their performance in their first match against Colombia, A match that saw Nayeli Rangel shine throughout. A match that up until the 82nd minute, had Mexico excited about a dream start to their tournament. After leading for most of the match thanks to a beautiful goal scored by Veronica Perez, Mexico’s dream start ended when Daniela Montoya scored a rocket for Colombia, tying the match in the process and breaking Mexican hearts along the way. It could have been their first win at a World Cup. They were so close. The loss of two points indeed hurt them and their next match was even more difficult.
Their second match in Group F was against England. An underdog story where Mexico triumphed against England in a hardfought match did not play out.
Instead, England ran out winners in a match that took a while to spring into life. Two quick-fire goals for England in 10 minutes in the late stages of the 2nd half saw Mexico struggling to continue. All their hard work had been in vain.
They now faced a dark reality of losing three points along with the two they had lost in their first match. Fran Kirby, the youngster from England, had no sympathy for Mexico. England couldn’t bear a loss to Mexico. They had lost 1-0 to France already.
Kirby was the first to draw blood and then soon after midfielder Karen Carney added another. Mexico had failed. With a few minutes left on the clock, Mexico managed to get a goal through Fabiola Ibarra but it was a little too late for El Tri. The clock had run out and the loss of the three points sees them eyeing a surprise onslaught in their favor against France in their last match of the tournament.
Will Mexico be able to get their first three points of the tournament? France will be difficult for them to beat. They are heavy favorites to make it out of the group and with their win against England and Mexico having lost to England, a dominant display by France might be in store for Mexico.
On the other hand - imagine if Mexico gets their first win ever against the heavy favorites, France. It will be a story to tell for the ages. Especially if their win against Les Bleus gives them enough points to make it to the next stage.
It’ll be a fairy tale of a campaign for Mexico. A fairy tale that might just end up eluding them. Sitting in fourth in the group, with only one point. Mexico would need to beat France to get four points. France would be eliminated from the group with that result (they sit in third with three points having lost 2-0 to Colombia).
Mexico would need a favor from Colombia if they do manage to get the four points. They would need Colombia to beat England. Colombia is the unexpected package of the group, still undefeated with a tie against Mexico and a win against France. If they beat England, and Mexico ends up beating France, El Tri will go on to the next round in second place. If Colombia and England tie and Mexico beats France. Well Mexico would have to rely on goal difference as the deciding factor. We’ll have to wait and see if Mexico can do it.
This is their last chance. Will Mexico keep dreaming?