Mexico Beats Germany 1-0 In World Cup Opener, Sets Off ‘Artificial Earthquake’ As Fans Revel In Victory
Mexico stunned soccer fans around the globe on Sunday after defeating Germany 1-0 in both teams’ opening FIFA World Cup game in Moscow.
Fans leaped for joy after El Tri scored late in the first half, and the celebrations were reportedly so intense that seismic shifts took place in Mexico City — literally.
The Institute of Geological and Atmospheric Investigations stated that highly sensitive earthquake sensors detected tremors at two spots in the capital just seconds after Mexico’s national team scored in the 35th minute of the matchup, which began at 11am EST.
The New York Times’ Kirk Simple shared a report on the tremor:
A small artificial earthquake detected in Mexico City “possibly due to mass jumping” when Mexico scored against Germany https://t.co/9arKFZHORU
— Kirk Semple (@KirkSemple) June 17, 2018
The sounds of cheers, vuvuzuelas and horns were heard all throughout Mexico and all around the world where natives from the country were attentively watching the contest. Many fans also began singing “Cielito Lindo,” (“Pretty Little Sky”) a well-known folk song that is often played at many of the national team’s games.
The victory for Mexico carried extra significance as it came on Father’s Day. The big win also came almost exactly nine months after a real, deadly 7.1-magnitude earthquake struck Mexico City in September 2017, killing hundreds and leaving dozens more injured. Several other minor tremors also hit the city’s greater area last fall.
👀that reaction from the Zocalo in Mexico City to Chucky Lozano’s goal. pic.twitter.com/PcyHyfit9w
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) June 17, 2018
Shortly after the victory, Mexico’s president Enrique Peña Nieto wrote on Twitter, in Spanish: “Confirmed: Mexico competes and wins against the best in the world. Many congratulations to @miseleccionmx! Great game!”
Confirmado: México compite y gana frente a los mejores del mundo. ¡Muchas Felicidades a @miseleccionmx! ¡Gran partido!🙌🏻🇲🇽⚽
— Enrique Peña Nieto (@EPN) June 17, 2018
Peña Nieto then announced in a separate tweet that the country’s federal government would offer free gasoline for all, although he did not specify if it was simply for that day or for longer.
Mexico is set to hold presidential elections on July 1, and left-wing MORENA party candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador — who has long been a prominent figure in the country’s politics and is commonly known as AMLO — holds a significant lead in the polls.
The hero of the matchup was 22-year-old Hirving “Chucky” Lozano,” a winger who plays for Dutch club PSV and a rising star in Mexican soccer. In the 35th minute, Mexico went on a rapid attack as Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez played a give-and-go pass and then fed Lozano, who collected the ball in the penalty box, just yards from the goal on the left side. After a quick, deft maneuver, Lozano beat German midfielder Mesut Ozil — an Arsenal star — and fired a low shot to goalie Manuel Neuer‘s right side to put Mexico up 1-0.
The youngster puts it away!
Chicharito starts the counterattack and Chucky Lozano finishes it to give Mexico the 1-0 lead. pic.twitter.com/Ze5IUJuE3d
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) June 17, 2018
The goal was a tremendous boost to Mexico, given that Germany are the defending World Cup champions after beating Argentina 1-0 in the final in Brazil in 2014. Neuer was the Golden Glove winner for that tournament.
Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa — who is playing in his fourth World Cup — also delivered a stellar performance, blocking many of Germany’s shots, including a free kick from Toni Kroos that came just three minutes after Lozano’s goal. Ochoa jumped to make the save and the ball hit the crossbar.
Germany — which dominated possession 60-40 — had 26 shots, nine of them on goal, as well as eight corner kicks but couldn’t get past Ochoa and El Tri’s defense. Mexico finished with 13 shots, four on target and just one corner kick, as well as two offsides versus only one for Germany.
Mexico now has three points in its group thanks to the victory, and will next play South Korea in Rostov-on-Don, Russia on Saturday. South Korea fell to Sweden 1-0 on Monday in its opening game, thus Sweden and Mexico lead Group F with three points each.
In Group E, Serbia defeated Costa Rica 1-0 on Sunday.