MOSCOW – Mexico (2W-1D-2L) wrapped up its 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup campaign Sunday with a narrow 2-1 loss to Portugal after extra time in the match for third place.
The CONCACAF champion was minutes away from its best finish in the competition since winning the 1999 edition, when Pepe equalized in the first minute of stoppage time. Adrien Silva converted from the penalty spot in 104th minute to earn the Portuguese a medal.
Despite the setback, Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa expressed satisfaction for his team’s play during its stay in Russia.
“As a Mexican, as a national team player, I feel proud of my team, of the national team, that I always faced the music, the manner in which the people treated us, the acknowledgement of how Mexico was seen in Russia,” said the 31-year-old. “We leave with that taste in our mouth for a rematch in the World Cup, with a desire to return and do better.”
Ochoa started four of the five matches, including Sunday’s loss to Portugal in which he saved Andre Silva’s 17th-minute penalty kick and earned Man of the Match honors.
“This recognition, more than me personally, is for the team,” the former Club America star finished. “Today, we deserved more, third place would have been the most logical for this team.
“After all this effort, sacrifice, since the beginning of training camp, we deserved a better reward in a tournament where the team showed attitude, fight, character, dignity, football. Very good things were done, others that will have to be corrected, but overall it was a positive cup.”