Sat | Mar 17, 2018

Boyz eliminated after losing against Mexico in Copa America

Published:Saturday | June 11, 2016 | 12:00 AM
Mexico forward Javier Hernandez (left) moves the ball as Jamaica midfielder Joel McAnuff pressures him during a Copa America Group C match at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California on Thursday night. Mexico won 2-0.

PASADENA, United States (CMC):

Jamaica's Reggae Boyz were eliminated from the Copa America Centenario after plunging to a 2-0 defeat to Mexico here on Thursday night, their second successive loss in the competition.

Goals in either half from former Manchester United star Javier Hernandez and his 78th minute substitute Oribe Peralta settled the issue at the Rose Bowl, which left Jamaica at the bottom of Group C without a goal or a point.

The Caribbean champions will now take on Uruguay in their next game at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara in a contest between the two winless and already eliminated teams.

Jamaica, however, carved out the first real chance of the game in the seventh minute when Birmingham City striker Clayton Donaldson got free, but shot wide, with only goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa to beat.

The Reggae Boyz were made to pay for that miss in the 18th minute, when Hernandez struck from close range. Raul Jimenez raced down the right flank and curled a cross into the left side of the 18-yard box, where Jesus Corona controlled and played a lofted ball back across to the centre for Hernandez.

The Bayer Leverkusen striker then eluded defenders Michael Hector and Wes Morgan to nod past goalkeeper Andre Blake from eight yards.

Fine chances for Jamaica

Jamaica then had two fine chances to level the score before half-time, but the goal-bound shots from Reading's Garath McCleary and Hector were both saved.

Mexico emerged from the break firing on all cylinders, and Hernandez should have doubled the lead in the 48th minute, but he failed to make contact with an attempted header from near point-blank range.

Two minutes later, Adrian Mariappa denied Jimenez with a crucial block to keep the scoreline intact, and the Crystal Palace defender was on hand again moments later to keep out Miguel Layun's dangerous delivery across the face of goal.

Jamaica had every right to feel hard done by when Donaldson was denied a clear-cut penalty in the 65th minute. He charged into the area with only Ochoa to beat, before being brought down by Yasser Corona, but referee Wilton Pereira Sampaio waved away the appeals.

Donaldson, however, had two golden chances in the space of minutes soon afterwards to make amends, but squandered both and Mexico found their insurance goal when Peralta produced a low finish from eight yards in the 81st minute.

Jamaica's night was summed up when Hector's long-range effort late on was superbly palmed away one-handed by a diving Ochoa.