USMNT draws with Mexico to keep World Cup qualification on track

Mexico City, Mexico - The USMNT and Mexico shared the points in a tense 0-0 draw in Thursday's CONCACAF World Cup qualifier in Mexico City.

Christian Pulisic missed two good chances against Mexico.
Christian Pulisic missed two good chances against Mexico.  © IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

A victory for either side would have put them on the brink of qualification, but both will need to wait, with the result leaving United States and Mexico in second and third positions respectively with two matches remaining.

Costa Rica moved into fourth spot after their 1-0 win over CONCACAF leaders Canada – who missed out on sealing their spot for Qatar – with the Ticos now three points behind the US and Mexico, who are locked on 22 points.

In a game where Mexico had a lion's share of possession, it was the USMNT creating the best of the chances, with Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa looking spry at 36 years young.

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Ochoa was called upon in the 14th minute to deny Yunus Musah, and again in the 36th minute to thwart Christian Pulisic, keeping things deadlocked heading into half-time.

Pulisic had another chance just minutes into the second half, but his sharp shot was kept out by Ochoa as he finished the match with four saves. Hirving Lozano had a pair of chances for Mexico in the second half, but sent one over in the 57th minute, and one into the crossbar in the 80th minute.

The team is still well-placed to make the World Cup and could qualify as early as Sunday if it beats Panama and Costa Rica, who will host the USMNT on Wednesday in the last game of the campaign, drops points.

The top three CONCACAF qualifiers will move on to the World Cup, while fourth-placed side will need to go through a play-off.

Cover photo: IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

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