MEXICO CITY - For 11 heady minutes, the United States enjoyed the rare sensation of leading Mexico at the Azteca stadium. In the end, however, they left with nothing.
The United States have lost 19 of 20 games against Mexico in the cavernous 105,000 capacity stadium although this time they were set for a share of the points until seven minutes from time when Miguel Sabah struck the winner in their World Cup qualifier.
"It was a tight game and a fair score but it is a tough loss - to have so many guys work so hard and then give up a late goal," said U.S. coach Bob Bradley.
"It is a great disappointment but that's the game. It is a good rivalry and we enjoy these matches."
Charlie Davies had opened the scoring for the United States in the ninth minute after great work from Landon Donovan, the goal silencing the passionate crowd.
"That was amazing. This is what you live for, especially as a striker, scoring big-time goals. Hopefully, there's more to come," said Davies.
"I think we have what it takes to win here but today we were a little bit unlucky. They were able to control most of the game with possession though and I think that's what hurt us."
The U.S. lead lasted just 11 minutes before Israel Castro struck the equaliser with a stunning drive from 25 metres.
"He hit an absolute dream goal," said Donovan, "You give that guy a thousand shots like that, he's not going to score that goal.
"It was a little unfortunate for us that he scores that goal, and then maybe at the end they get a little lucky bounce in the box. It's frustrating."