Mexico head coach Mario Arteaga was in sombre mood adressing the press, after his Mexico U17 side were beaten 2-1 by a Iran's U17 team, who booked their slot in the quarter-finals of the U17 World Cup, in Goa on Tuesday, 17th October 2017.
The Mexican coach was adamant that just two mistakes cost his side a pivotal match. "We made two mistakes in the beginning of the match and it was too difficult to come back. We were unable to score more goals and that's why we lost tonight," explained the losing coach, on the match's result.
Questioned if this had been Mexicos best display in a tournament they'd failed to notch a win in, the 46 year-old replied, "No. Actually, it was our worst match because we are out. At moments we played nice football. It's a knock-out and now we're out."
Deducing the positives from a shallow defeat seemed on the back of the mind for Arteaga who reasoned, "I would highlight the fighting spirit of my team that we showed tonight. We are a winning team. In the past 20 months, out of nine tournaments that we played, we won seven. So we thought, based on that, we will do well in the U17 World Cup. We showed our fighting spirit but it wasn't enough."
"The players are very disappointed. The objective was to be among the best four. So we were expecting to play seven matches but in the end we played only four. So that's why my players are more disappointed," he further added, citing player mood in the camp.
Finally, the future of Mexico's shining gem Diego Lainez was briought under the microscope and questioned if he'd move to Europe soon, Arteaga concluded, "He's an unique player. He's fast and explosive. He has the qualities which fans like. He has recently joined the first team of his club (Club America) in Mexico. So I wouldn't be surprised if he moves to Europe soon."
Frustration and sorrow were soon replaced by the thawing and gentle spirit of victory as seen in the Iran team, when coach Abbas Chamanian spoke after the match and jubilant celebrations.
"We predicted that this match would be tough, the toughest match in the (U17) World Cup until now. We started well and scored two goals. We had more opportunities to score more goals but we conceded a goal. I always tell my players that 2-0 is very dangerous. If the opponent scores one, the game continues to be very tough. The way we controlled the result in the second half was a good victory for us," claimed a ebullient and expressive Chamian, on his thoughts of the match and his team's performance.
"Mexico is very good in the attack, especially number 19 (Diego Lainez). He annoyed me a lot. We should not forget that we had many opportunities in the second half. We had some problems in the first half. So we wanted to organise our defense and we introduced (Amir) Esmaeil Zadeh in. Although he has an injured arm, after he came in, our situation was better," repeid the gafferwhen asked on his side's nullification of Mexicios most potent force.
Finally, the Mashhad born coach concluded, "After the group stage, we have reorganised and rearranged our team. We must forget every match until now. To go into the semi-final, we have a big and important step (against Spain)."