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Argentina dispatches Mexico in World Cup -- again

June 28, 2010 | 12:21 pm

Portada_laprensa To the left, the front page of La Prensa in Mexico City Monday, lamenting Mexico's World Cup loss against Argentina, 3-1, on Sunday in Johannesburg, South Africa. "Failure!" the headline reads, above a photo of forward Giovani Dos Santos with tears welling in his eyes.

Two crucial mistakes and a questionable goal from Argentina early in the match sealed Mexico's fate. The loss eliminated Mexico from contention for the Cup and repeated the squad's inelegant exit from the tournament in 2006, when Argentina took out El Tri, 2-1, in Germany.

"It was a team that was supposed to make history," Kevin Baxter writes in The Times. "Instead it only repeated it."

The match was rife with significance beyond the field. Mexico entered the tournament with high expectations, but Argentina came in as favorites to potentially win it all. Plus, they are coached in this World Cup by Diego Maradona, a legend to any soccer fan anywhere in the world. For Mexico, it's "more of the same," reflecting what some refer to as a nagging mentality of inferiority (link in Spanish).

Others see it as pure bad luck --  terrible, epic, awful luck. The Los Angeles soccer blog From a Left Wing put it this way: "It's become a World Cup scripted by Emile Zola."

Not for all the teams, of course. Latin American squads are faring well so far in South Africa, with six advancing to the Round of 16, matching six from Europe. With their wins, Argentina and Uruguay advance to the quarterfinals, and Brazil and Chile face off on Monday for their duel to advance.

-- Daniel Hernandez in Mexico

Image: La Prensa

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