[MEXICO-JAPAN] Mexico is assured of becoming the first Concacaf country to win an Olympic medal in men's soccer as it beat Japan, 3-1, in Tuesday's semifinals
at Wembley Stadium, gaining revenge for its 2-0 loss to Japan in the bronze-medal game at the 1968 Mexico City Games.
Japan went ahead on Yuki Otsu's goal in the 12th minute, but Mexico responded on goals by Marco Fabian in the 31st minute -- the first Japan had allowed in five games -- Oribe Peralta in the 65th minute and Javier Cortes in stoppage time.
The killer goal was Peralta's goal. He won the ball after Japanese defender Takahiro Ohgihara held it too long following Japan keeper Shuichi Gonda's pass and buried his shot into the top corner of the goal.
“I have never scored a goal that went so close to the top corner,” he said. “That goal represented everything we tried to do today because I fought for the ball, I got it back and I shot with all my strength.”
Mexico will return to Wembley Stadium and face Brazil in Saturday's gold-medal game.
"That's just it, we are 90 minutes away from history," said defender Carlos Salcido, one of three overage players Mexico brought. "That is the way we are looking at it."