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Men's U.S. Cup

Ireland overcomes two goal deficit to tie Mexico 2-2.

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (Sunday, June 4, 2000) -- Ireland overcame a 2-0 second-half deficit to draw Mexico 2-2 on goals by Richard Dunne and Domonic Foley in Nike U.S. Cup action in Chicago on Sunday in front of a rain-soaked crowd of 36,469 at Soldier Field. In the tournament's opening match on Saturday in Washington, D.C., the USA downed South Africa 4-0 in an impressive display before 16,570 at RFK Stadium.

Ireland will be called back into action immediately on Tuesday when the team takes on the USA at Foxboro Stadium outside of Boston. The match will be aired live on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET. The tournament will then continue with Mexico-South Africa in Dallas' Cotton Bowl on Wednesday, where Mexican forward Luis Hernandez of the Los Angeles Galaxy will join the team. The tournament will conclude with a classic doubleheader featuring the USA battling their arch-rival Mexico and Ireland taking on South Africa at Giants Stadium in New Jersey on Sunday (June 11).

Mexico opened the scoring in the 38th minute after a long dribbling run by Luis Perez through the heart of the Irish midfield that resulted in a short pass off to dangerous forward Daniel Osorno at the top of the penalty area. Osorno, running against the flow of play created by Perez's run, collected the ball moving to his right and cracked a right-footed shot into the left side of the Irish goal from 18 yards out. The ball took a slight deflection off Irish defender Gary Breen before settling in the back of the net past goalkeeper Dean Kiely, who had committed to his left as the ball deflected right.

The Tri-Colores second goal came nine minutes into the second half, with Osorno dribbling free at the left edge of the penalty area and hitting a low, solid cross to the near post along the end line where an on-rushing Horacio Sanchez slammed the ball inside the near post from close range.

In the 60th minute, Ireland finally broke down Mexico's hardworking defense, with Dunne slotting a shot home from six yards out. The goal was created by Breen, who headed a long corner kick from Ireland's Jason McAteer back into the goal mouth from the far post, enabling Dunne to notch his first international goal in just his third career appearance.

Ireland tied the match moments later on a dramatic goal, with McAteer again beginning the charge, this time flicking a soft pass into the right wing for Stephen Carr racing forward from his right back position. Carr took two touches into space and into the penalty area, drawing out Mexican goalkeeper Sergio Bernal and then neatly slotting a pass back to an unmarked Foley who calmly tied the match on 71 minutes.

Ireland 2, Mexico 2

Lineups: Ireland - Dean Kiely, Stephen Carr, Terry Phelan, Gary Breen, Richard Dunne (Phil Babb 82), Jason McAteer, Matt Holland, Mark Kennedy, Barry Quinn (Kevin Kilbane 41); Niall Quinn (captain), Robbie Keane (Domonic Foley 46). Mexico - Sergio Bernal, Joaquin Beltran, Christian Ramirez (Gilberto Jimenez 69), Raul Alpizar, Israel Lopez, Gerardo Torrado, Luis Perez, Antonio Sancho (captain) (Gerardo Galindo 81), Horacio Sanchez, Luis Ignacio Gonzalez, Daniel Osorno).

Scoring:
Mexico - Osorno (Perez) 38.
Mexico - Sanchez (Osorno) 54.
Ireland - Dunne (Breen) 60.
Ireland - Foley (Carr) 71.

Shots: Ireland 6, Mexico 13. Saves: Ireland 5, Mexico 0. Corner kicks: Ireland 5, Mexico 8. Fouls: Ireland 14, Mexico 9. Offside: Ireland 1, Mexico 2. Yellow card cautions: Ireland - Quinn 11, McAteer 88; Mexico - Sancho 15, Perez 40.

Referee: n/a. Assistant referees: n/a. Attendance: 36,469 at Soldier Field in Chicago, Ill. Weather: 55 degrees, cool, rain.

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