Croatia 1 Mexico 3: Player ratings as Man United striker gets off the mark

Croatia 1 Mexico 3: Player ratings as Javier Hernandez comes off the bench to score and help his side reach the World Cup last 16

Croatia
1
Mexico
3

Croatia

Stipe Pletikosa Got hands to both goals but could not keep them out, will probably feel he could have saved one. 5/10

Darijo Srna Always willing to support attacks from right back. Was the pick of Croatia’s players going forward in the first half which spoke volumes of how ineffective Niko Kovac’s side were in the opening period. Made excellent tackle just after half-time to deny dos Santos a shooting chance. 7

Sime Vrsaljko Sported eye-catching Mohican hairstyle but his performance was less so. No lack of solidity against Aguilar but being naturally right-footed on the left slowed down Croatian attacks. Withdrawn early as his side pushed for the win. 5

Dejan Lovren Worried by the pace of the Mexicans going forward particularly as they upped the ante in the second 45 minutes. 5

Vedran Corluka Undone by Peralta’s movement in the first half as the striker bypassed him before missing first half chance. Made goal-line clearance in the second half. 5

Danijel Pranjic Kept possession well enough, but seemed devoid of a telling forward pass. 4

Ivan Rakitic Shown early yellow card for nasty mistimed tackle on Vazquez looked to make his side tick at every moment but failed to find his rhythm. 5

Ivan Perisic Got very little joy up against the left-sided defensive partnership of Moreno and Layun. His late goal rewarded him for what was for most of the night a thankless task. 6

Ivica Olic As anyone who has ever seen him play before will have surmised he never stopped running but his efforts did not amount to anything fruitful for his side. 5

Luka Modric Failed to deliver in the number 10 role, saw a bit more of the ball when moved deeper, but was restricted by the diligence of the Mexican midfield. 5

Mario Mandzukic Well-shackled by the Mexican central defenders and cut a frustrated figure as he was forced to feed off scraps of service as he headed the Croatian attack. 4

Substitutes

Mateo Kovacic Failed to make an impact as his introduction coincided with the Mexicans taking control. 4

Nikica Jelavic Thrown on as a last resort when hope already looked to be fading. 5

Ante Rebic Came on and committed horrible foul on opposition substitute Pena with studs showing. Rightly received his marching orders. 1

Mexico

Guillermo Ochoa After working overtime against Brazil enjoyed an evening off, practically un-tested by the Croats. 5

Paul Aguilar Tempered his natural instinct to go forward in order to deny the tireless Olic space down the left. 7

Miguel Layun Energetic as ever in the left wing back position duelled with opposite number Perisic down that flank and largely won the battle. 7

Hector Moreno Defensively alert and composed when playing out of defence just like his colleagues at the back. 7

Rafael Marquez A classy captain. Commanded his troops with authority distinction, he and his defensive companions worked in tandem to frustrate Mario Mandzukic. Deserved his powerful downward header which sent thousands of Mexicans wild. 8

Francisco Rodriguez As the right-sided centre-back he combined with Aguilar to make sure the runs of Olic down the left were in vain. 7

Hector Herrera Struck the crossbar with thunderous left-footed effort after 15 minutes. Was combative in the tackle and composed in possession as he drove his team on. 8

Jose Vazquez Less spectacular than his counterparts in midfield but crucial nonetheless, his absence against the Netherlands will be felt in the second round will be felt. 7

Andres Guardado An all-action display from the man with a precise a left foot as anyone in Brazil at present. His goal demonstrated the damage that left peg of his can do. 8

Oribe Peralta His hard-working display posed a problem for Lovren and Corluka throughout his time on the pitch. Laid a deliciously inviting ball into the path of Guardado for the second goal, which the midfielder promptly lashed home. 7

Giovani dos Santos Lively up front but was famished of the ball in forward areas ultimately meaning his impact on the game was weak. 5

Substitutes

Javier Hernandez His arrival on the field brought his side to life as they blew the Croatians away in the second half. His headed goal capped a cameo that will have reminded Manchester United fans what he is capable of. 7

Carlos Pena Thankfully survived Radic’s horror tackle unscathed. 5

Marco Fabian N/A

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