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Mexico 2-0 Canada: Guardado, Corona score as Mexicans qualify for final round

Mexico booked its spot in the final round of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying thanks to a routine 2-0 win at home over Canada.

Five days on from its 3-0 victory in the reverse fixture in Canada, Mexico was largely untroubled at Estadio Azteca as it preserved a perfect record in Group A thanks to goals from captain Andres Guardado and Jesus Corona on Tuesday.

Guardado broke the deadlock with an 18th-minute spot kick before Corona doubled the lead on the stroke of halftime to inspire Mexico to four wins from four games, a perfect run of results that has seen the Gold Cup champions score 10 goals without conceding.

With two fixtures remaining before the "Hexagonal" round, Mexico — in the midst of a 17-match unbeaten — tops the group with 12 points, eight more than Canada and El Salvador.

Veteran defender Rafael Marquez missed the match with a right abductor injury suffered in last week's triumph, replaced by Nestor Araujo.

Juan Carlos Osorio made four other changes to the starting XI, with Jose Corona, Jesus Molina, Marco Fabian and Raul Jimenez coming in for Alfredo Talavera, Diego Reyes, Hirving Lozano and Javier Hernandez.

The Canadians also introduced fresh faces in the form of Nikolas Ledgerwood and Manjrekar James at the expense of Adam Straith and Tosaint Ricketts.

Mexico controlled proceedings but struggled to create any real clear-cut chances until Guardado stepped up and converted an 18th-minute penalty.

Fabian was clattered into by Doneil Henry inside the box and Guardado made no mistake against Milan Borjan.

Borjan was in the thick of the action approaching halftime, somehow managing to keep Fabian's low shot out of the net after the ball rolled underneath him in the 38th minute.

And that proved to be his final contribution, after immediately signaling to the bench, having suffered an apparent finger injury.

His replacement, Kyriakos Stamatopoulos, was then forced to pick the ball out of the net on the stroke of halftime following a tremendous bit of skill from Jesus Corona, who turned his two opponents inside out before firing the ball into the bottom corner in one motion.

It was Corona's second goal in two games, having netted in Vancouver.

Mexico continued where it left off in the second half and almost made it 3-0 but a diving Fabian was unable to latch on to Guardado's delivery cross the 6-yard box.

Canada held firm without really threatening in the remaining minutes as it avoided any further damage heading into decisive September fixtures against Honduras and El Salvador.