Eduardo Herrera's early goal lifts Mexico over Paraguay at Arrowhead
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Eduardo Herrera scored in the third minute to lift Mexico to a 1-0 victory over Paraguay in an international friendly Tuesday night at Arrowhead Stadium.
Herrera scored from in close after a free kick by midfielder Juan Carlos Medina.
"We lead with our noses blue," Mexican national team coach Miguel Herrera said, while donning a blue cap on his nose. "We are the blue noses. The game really didn't go how we wanted it to go. It was a big hit to our self-esteem. But what leaves me calm is the attitude of the team."
Eduardo Hererra headed another attempt in the 44th minute, but missed to the right, before being replaced by Chicharito 15 minutes later.
Mexico overmatched Paraguay in the first half, but it didn't stay that way throughout the remainder of the match. Paraguay failed to attempt a shot on goal in the first half, but drove two shots within feet of the goal during the second half.
Paraguay national team coach Ramon Diaz said he felt satisfied with the game, and he feels with time that the team will continue to improve.
"There was no moment in the game where we weren't trying," Diaz said.
The match was chippy from the start, as the first foul came in the second minute by Paraguay's Fabian Balbuena. By the time the match was over, Paraguay was whistled for 24 fouls, while Mexico had 19.
Five yellow cards were issued in the first half alone. Paraguay's Richard Ortiz received one for a tactical foul, and Pablo Aguilar and Ivan Piris for reckless fouls. Paulo Da Silva was issued a yellow card for an unspecified reason. Mexico's Javier Guemez also earned one. Only one yellow card came in the second half.
"I don't think we should complain about the reffing," Miguel Herrera said.
After the match, several fans rushed onto the pitch and were promptly tackled by security personnel. As the fans were escorted off the field, approximately 100 cans of beer were thrown into the playing area. It was unclear whether the fans were protesting the arresting of the fans that rushed the pitch or the fans running onto the pitch.
"I did feel like we were playing in Mexico tonight," Miguel Herrera said. "The fans made us feel like we were playing at home. They were shouting at Chicharito and they were applauding the players. It makes me very happy to know that our people came to watch us."