Angel Sepulveda and Edson Alvarez scored and Mexico held on to beat Curaco 2-0 on Sunday night at the Alamodome in San Antonio to win Group C in the CONCACAF Gold Cup and continue its bid for a fourth championship in five years.
Mexico advances to face Honduras in the quarterfinals Thursday night in Glendale at University of Phoenix Stadium.
The defending champions had a surprisingly tough match against Curacao, which was competing in the Gold Cup for the first time.
Sepulveda scored on a diving header in the 22nd minute off a cross-field assist from Raul Lopez. Alvarez scored in the 90th minute shortly after injury time was added.
Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio celebrated Alvarez’s goal from a suite in the Alamodome while serving the third of a six-match suspension from FIFA for his actions toward officials during a Confederations Cup match.
Coming off a scoreless draw against Jamaica on Thursday night in Denver, Mexico was able to overcome a gritty effort by Curacao to finish 2-0-1 in Group C.
Jamaica beat El Salvador 1-0 in the earlier match, but both advanced out of Group C based on match points.
Canada and Jamaica advanced to the other semifinal in Glendale on Thursday.
2017 CONCACAF Gold Cup Knockout Match Schedule
Wednesday, July 19 – Lincoln Financial Field (Philadelphia)
3 p.m. – Costa Rica vs. Panama
6 p.m. PM – U.S. vs. El Salvador
Thursday, July 20 – University of Phoenix Stadium (Glendale)
4:30 p.m. – Jamaica vs. Canada
7:30 p.m. – Mexico vs. Honduras
Saturday, July 22 – AT&T Stadium (Arlington, Texas)
7 p.m. – Costa Rica or Panama vs. U.S. vs. El Salvador
Sunday, July 23, 2017 – Rose Bowl (Pasadena, Calif.)
6 p.m. – Jamaica or Canada vs. Mexico vs. Honduras
Wednesday, July 26 – Levi’s Stadium (Santa Clara, Calif.)
6:30 p.m. Semifinal 1 winners vs. semifinal 2