East Rutherford, New Jersey, Jun 19: Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez's second half goal helped defending champion Mexico come from behind to beat Guatemala 2-1 in the quarterfinals of the Gold Cup on Saturday night.
Trailing 1-0 in the second half, substitute Aldo De Nigris equalized in the 48th minute before Manchester United star Chicharito's 66th minute goal gave undermanned Mexico a semifinal berth against Honduras on Wednesday night in Houston.
Carlos Ruiz scored for Guatemala in the fifth minute and Mexican goalkeeper Alfredo Talavera had to make a finger-tip save on his 25-yard shot in the 73rd minute to keep El Tri ahead.
Honduras advanced in the first game of the doubleheader at the New Meadowlands Stadium that drew a sellout crowd of 78,807 with a 4-2 penalty shootout win over Costa Rica.
Mexico currently only has 17 squad players because goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa and defender Francisco Rodriguez, both starters on last year's World Cup team, and three others were removed from the team Thursday after testing positive for clenbuterol, a banned anabolic agent. Ricardo Osorio already had been sent home with an illness.
Guatemala started strongly and took a deserved lead in the fifth minute when Mexican defender Hector Moreno miscued his clearance from Elias Enoc Vasquez's long pass, allowing Ruiz to steal in and chip the ball over Talavera.
Mexico, which had outscored its opponents 14-1 in winning its three opening-round games, brought on De Nigris at half time and it paid instant dividends with the substitute directing home Moreno's shot from short range.Pablo Barrera set up the game winner with a run down the right side, ending with a shot which "Chicharito" deflected past Jerez for his sixth goal of the tournament. AP