Javier Hernandez (left) celebrates after scoring against Costa Rica in an international friendly on June 27, 2015, in Orlando, Florida. (Photo: Mexsport)
ORLANDO, Fla. – In the final CONCACAF Gold Cup tune-up for each, Mexico and Costa Rica played to a 2-2 draw in front of 53,629 at the Citrus Bowl on Saturday.
The Costa Ricans raced out to a 1-0 lead in the fourth minute, when David Ramirez received a pass played to the right by Joel Campbell that turned the Mexican defense the wrong way and fired a shot off goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa from 10-yards out.
Campbell was again influential in helping the Ticos to double their advantage in the 36th minute. The 23-year-old attacker played a superb ball into the left side of the box for Ramirez, who in turn sent a low and deep cross across the face of goal. Johan Venegas made a near post run, but was unable to connect with the ball, which Mexican defender Miguel Layun inadvertently directed into his own net.
Mexico regrouped and halved the deficit eight minutes after the break. Giovani dos Santos latched onto a deflected ball in the right side of the Costa Rican box and placed a tight-angled shot into the far-side netting from the right edge of the six-yard box.
Two minutes later, an unmarked Javier Hernandez leveled for the six-time CONCACAF champion, heading in a perfect cross by Carlos Esquivel from eight-yards out.
Costa Rica opens its Gold Cup campaign against Group B rival Jamaica on July 8 at the StubHub Center in Carson, California, while Mexico meets Cuba as part of a Group C doubleheader at Chicago’s Soldier Field on July 9.