Action from the World Cup qualifier between host Mexico and Panama (white jersey) on June 8, 2017, in Mexico City. (Photo: Straffon Images)
MEXICO CITY -- Oswaldo Alanis, Hirving Lozano and Raul Jimenez all scored to help Mexico (4W-1D-0L, 13 points) to a 3-0 over visiting Honduras (1-1-3, 4) in the final round of CONCACAF qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Thursday night.
The victory kept the Tricolor (4W-1D-0L, 13 pts) atop the table, five points ahead of second-place Costa Rica, which played now fourth-place Panama to a scoreless draw
Central American champion Honduras had a win and a draw in its last two qualifying trips to the Estadio Azteca, but -- in this one -- Mexico was in control throughout.
Alanis struck for the first goal in the 34th minute, reaching Jonathan dos Santos’ in-swinging corner kick and sending a glancing header inside the right post.
Mexico then scored twice during a three-minute stretch in the second half.
First, Lozano got behind the Honduras back line, rounded goalkeeper Donis Escober and finished into an empty net.
With Honduras’ defense still holding a high line, Jimenez beat it by playing a quick combination with Carlos Vela and chipping his finish over the charging Escober.
Mexico has conceded only one goal through five Hexagonal matches.
June 11, 2017: Mexico v USA
June 13, 2017: Panama v Honduras