Confederations Cup: Javier Hernandez looks to excel as Mexico face New Zealand

Javier Hernandez will be looking to continue his impressive run in the FIFA Confederations Cup when Mexico face New Zealand in their Group A clash.

football Updated: Jun 19, 2017 22:20 IST
FIFA Confederations Cup 2-17,Javier Hernandez,Mexico vs New Zealand
Mexico's Javier Hernandez celebrates after scoring a goal during the 2017 Confederations Cup group A match against Portugal.(AFP)

Javier Hernandez wants Mexico to make their dramatic late comeback against Portugal count when theyface New Zealand in the Confederations Cup in Sochi on Wednesday.

New Roma recruit Hector Moreno pounced in stoppage time to snatch a 2-2 draw in Kazan, where Cedric Soares appeared to have sealed the points for the European champions.

It was the second time Juan Carlos Osorio’s men came from behind in anundulating match, with Hernandez heading home in the 42nd minute after Ricardo Quaresma opened the scoring.

The Gold Cup holders are heavy favourites heading into their next Group A assignment at Fisht Stadium, with New Zealand nursing a 2-0 defeat to Russia last Friday – a match that saw the All Whites tick past 500 minutes without a goal at the Confederations Cup.

“Coming from behind leaves you with a different feeling,” Hernandez said.

“We want to look at it with tranquillity as we don’t know if this point will be good or not until we play the remaining two group stage matches and we know if we qualify for the semi-finals.

“If we don’t then this point will mean nothing because all we want is qualifying for the next stage and to end up winning the tournament.”

Upsetting the hosts on the opening night was widely viewed as the best chance for tournament outsiders New Zealand to get some points on the board with a famous scalp, theiroverall ambitions lying somewhat more modestly.

However, goalkeeper Stefan Marinovic has sought to rally his team-mates and insists any negativity in the camp will not be tolerated.

“Of course belief is still there,”said the 25-year-old, who plays for third-tier German side Unterhaching. “No one in this team is negative and never has been.

“That is one thing that if you want to be in the All Whites, you need to have that belief.

“You need to always be positive… you want to be here. If you have got a negative attitude then you don’t deserve to be here.”

New Zealand boss Andrew Hudson could seek to rebalance his team after the inclusion of attack-minded duo Kosta Barbarouses and MarcoRojas left them lacking midfield numbers against Russia’s early onslaught.

Opposite number Osorio has a long-established commitment to rotating his line-up, often to the chagrin of Mexican fans and pundits,and the combination of aswift turnaround in playing time, alongsidethe relative weakness of the opposition, means he should be expected to ring the changes once more.

First Published: Jun 19, 2017 22:20 IST