After their 1-0 win over World Champions Germany sent shockwaves throughout the football world – and quite literally in Mexico which supposedly experienced an artificial earthquake due to the celebrations – Mexico will look to put themselves in a good position to qualify for the next stage against a South Korean side that lost 1-0 to Sweden in their opening game.
That opening round loss for South Korea was their second straight loss overall and fourth without a win (D1, L3), with the last three seeing them fail to score. A loss here would make qualification unlikely.
That win over Germany – when it mattered – was only Mexico’s second win in their last five (W2, L2, D1).
Mexico’s last eight games have interestingly seen only one side score and seven of those eight finished with under 2.5 goals, while they only conceded three goals in that time (scoring seven).
These sides have met once at a World Cup (WC) finals, which was in France ’98 when Mexico ran out 3-1 winners. Overall, they have met on ten occasions with Mexico winning five, South Korea four (once on penalties) while one was a draw.
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Players to watch: Heung-Min Son has 21 international goals for South Korea but none in his last four. He’ll need to lead by example in this one.
Highly-rated forward Hirving ‘Chucky’ Lozano scored Mexico’s goal versus Germany and is part of a very mobile front three with Carlos Vela and Javier Hernández.
Stat attack: Mexico were last losing at half-time 21 games ago!
In their last seven appearances at WC finals, Mexico haven’t lost their second game (W3, D4).
South Korea haven’t been leading at half-time in any of their last seven games.
In nine games against Spanish speaking nations at WC finals, South Korea have won none in 90 minutes (D3, L6).
Referee: Mazic M. (Srb)
Venue: Rostov Arena (Rostov)