Mexico vs Poland 0-0: Player evaluations after Lewandowski’s missed penalty

Mexico vs Poland 0-0

Mexico vs Poland 0-0: Robert Lewandowski remains without a World Cup goal after missing a penalty kick during Poland’s scoreless draw with Mexico.

The two sides entered the match buoyed by Argentina’s shocking loss to Saudi Arabia earlier in the day, but neither was able to fully capitalise on the situation.

Alexis Vega missed a golden opportunity when he isolated Matty Cash at the back post and outjumped him, which was Mexico’s greatest opportunity in the early exchanges. However, he could only steer his header wide.

It soon deteriorated into a low-quality contest that failed to generate much goalmouth action. Mexico usually exerted the greatest pressure, though. Poland, in contrast, was prepared to remain inside its own half and make things difficult.

Due to Poland’s apparent rethinking, the second half momentarily resembled a totally different contest. They began pressuring the ball rather than sitting back, and it seemed to have had immediate results.

Following a VAR review of Hector Moreno’s foul on Lewandowski, a penalty was granted. He rose to attempt the penalty kick, but Guillermo Ochoa made a fantastic stop low to his left to deny him.

Henry Martin promptly pushed Wojciech Szczesny into a wonderful reaction save with a deft header as Mexico attempted to capitalise on Lewandowski’s gift to them.

Raul Jimenez, a striker for the Wolves, was brought in to give the team with the missing edge, while Hirving Lozano posed a continuous danger. However, opportunities were few, and frustration intensified.

Both teams were unable to find a moment of class to steal a victory as Poland retreated to their deep defensive positions.

1. Mexico (4-3-3)

GK: Guillermo Ochoa – 7/10 – The veteran came up huge when Mexico needed him the most with a great penalty save.

RB: Jorge Sanchez – 6/10 – Energetic performance down the right side.

CB: Hector Moreno – 5/10 – Stupidly handed away a penalty, but his goalie kept him out of prison.

Cesar Montes – 6/10 – Even though they were seldom tested, they performed well.

LB: Jesus Gallardo – 6/10 – Lots of running but not much else.

CM: Edson Alvarez – 6/10 – Kept the ball moving decently but didn’t stick out.

Hector Herrera – 6/10 – Wasn’t really in the game.

CM: Luis Chavez – 7/10 – The finest of Mexico’s three midfielders.

Hirving Lozano – 7/10 – A livewire, for sure, but no actual product.

CF: Henry Martin – 6/10 – An unlucky miss with a clever header.

LF: Alexis Vega – 7/10 – Mexico’s finest player in the first half but faded.

Carlos Rodriguez (71′ for Herrera) – N/A

SUB: Raul Jimenez (71′ for Martin) – N/A

SUB: Uriel Antuna (84′ for Vega) – N/A

Manager: Gerardo Martino – 7/10 – It was difficult to enjoy how he set up his side, but he did it nicely.