HOUSTON – Javier Hernandez scored a goal after Andres Guardado and Oribe Peralta finally got Mexico going with two late goals on the way to a 5-0 rout of Guyana in a World Cup qualifier played at a neutral site.
Guyana defender Charles Pollard knocked in an own-goal in the 83rd minute and Javier Hernandez headed one in less than two minutes later to add to the goal fiesta at BBVACompass Stadium, home to the Houston Dynamo of Major League Soccer.
Angel Reyna capped the scoring a minute after Chicharito, with a 25-yard blast for El Tri, who are already assured a spot in the final round of qualifying for the CONCACAF region and remained perfect in group play with a game to go.
Mexico dominated Guyana from the opening whistle, but squandered multiple scoring opportunities against a team poised on defending and betting on the counterattack.
Guyana was the home team, but the match was played in Houston after the Guyanese federation sold the rights to the game to a Texas-based promoter.
Mexico dominated Guyana from the opening whistle, but squandered multiple scoring opportunities against a team focused on defending and counterattacking.
Guyana's defense played fearless and well organized soccer until the 78th minute.
Guardado broke the stalemate with a 23-yard left-footed shot that bent past two defenders and Guyana goalkeeper Derrick Carter. Peralta doubled the score in the 80th minute, collecting a pass from Hernandez and slotting it through as the Guyana defense began to collapse.
Mexico outshot Guyana 34-7, including 10-2 in shots on goal.
Hernandez missed a penalty kick that could have given his team the early lead. He earned the kick in the fourth minute after being brought down by Carter in the penalty box, but his chip attempt over the goalkeeper deflected off the crossbar.
The Golden Jaguars turned aside an all-out assault by Mexico in the first half, when they were outshot 20-7.
Javier Aquino broke free along the left side and chipped Carter from 14 yards, but his shot deflected off the far post 12 minutes into the game. Israel Jimenez had a 22-yard shot deflect off the crossbar in the 40th minute.
Guardado had 12-yarder deflect high off a Guyana defender in the 28th minute, and a free kick sail just wide of the near post in the 33rd.
Guyana's best chance came in the 34th minute via Gregory Richardson, who got by two defenders in the Mexico box only to have his shot from 6 yards deflected out.
The game amounted to an exhibition, with Mexico having already secured a berth into the final round of qualifying and Guyana eliminated.
Guyana played without coach Jamaal Shabazz, who did not make the trip because of last-minute personal reasons. Prior to the game, the team was considering having Shabazz coach the team via Skype.
With one game to go, Mexico is assured a first-place finish in Group B with 15 points. Guyana is last in the four-team group, with one point. Mexico, the reigning CONCACAF champion, is trying to qualify for a record sixth consecutive World Cup.