Mex­ico beat New Zea­land 5- 1 in first- leg play- off

The Star (Jamaica) - - SPORTS -

MEX­ICO CITY ( AP): ex­ico swept to a 5- 1 vic­tory over New Zea­land in the first leg of their in­ter­con­ti­nen­tal play- off yes­ter­day to be­come the over­whelm­ing favourites for a place at next year’s World Cup fi­nals.

Paul Aguilar put Mex­ico ahead in the 32nd minute and Raul Jimenez made 2- 0 be­fore

Mthe break. Oribe Per­alta added two more in the sec­ond half be­fore Rafael Mar­quez scored in the 84th, and Chris James grabbed a con­so­la­tion goal for New Zea­land a minute later.

Mex­ico, who were lucky to reach the play- off, face New Zea­land in the sec­ond leg next Wednes­day. Mex­ico scored only seven goals in 10 qual­i­fy­ing games, but broke through un­der new coach Miguel Her­rera. Her­rera, the fourth Mex­ico coach in two months, used only play­ers based in Mex­ico’s do­mes­tic league.

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