By Allen Ramsey, Goal.com
Mexico took a 2-0 win over Canada on Thursday night to get its Gold Cup back on track and keep Canada's slide going.
Raul Jimenez scored the game's opening goal just before the break, and Marco Fabian added a second early in the second half to give El Tri its second win of the year.
The first half had a familiar feel for both sides, until Jimenez got Mexico on the board. El Tri dominated possession and largely controlled the run of play, while the Canadians were clearly focused on staying organized defensively and trying to find a goal through quick counterattacks.
The stylistic differences led to a fairly tame opening 40 minutes of the match, with neither side really doing enough to deserve to be in front.
But in the 42nd minute, a deflected cross at the top of Canada's box led to a chance for Fabian, who skipped past two defenders and forced a save from Canadian goalkeeper Milan Borjan. While Borjan manged to keep Fabian out, his save gave Mexico a corner, and El Tri took full advantage.
The initial ball in was flicked to the middle of the box where Jimenez was waiting to head home the opener and send his team to the break a goal to the good.
Ten minutes into the second half things got worse for the Canadians. Fabian was slipped into the space between two Canadian defenders and went down in the box. A contentious penalty was awarded and he made no mistake with his spot kick, giving Mexico a 2-0 lead.
The second goal brought Canada out of its shell a bit, but Mexico's ability to hold the ball when in possession and to pressure the ball defensively kept Canadian chances at a minimum.
The win leaves Mexico with three points from two matches, and leaves Canada still searching for its first point after opening the tournament with a loss to Martinique.
Earlier in the night Panama topped Martinique 1-0 and earned a spot in the knockout rounds, with Mexico and Martinique set to square off for Group A's second spot in the group-stage finale for both teams.
For Canada, the final match of group play, against Panama, is a must win for the team to have any chance of advancing as one of the top two third-place teams.
The final round of Group A matches will be played in Denver on Sunday.