It is advantage Argentina as right before half-time Riquelme floated a free-kick to the far post where Heinze had slipped past three defenders to be on hand to knock in.
It was a finely balanced 45 minutes that restricted clearcut chances for both teams. Before Argentina’s goal Mexico came closest when Guardado stepped inside three Argentine defenders and saw his shot clip the outside of a post.
A lively Tevez wasted two good chances when he got a clear sight of goal, once shooting wide, once straight at the keeper. Combining well several times early on with Riquelme, Tevez and Messi looked keen to pick up from where they left off against Peru as Argentina started on top. They were joined in the 12th minute when Zanetti waltzed into the box but shot straight at Sánchez.
But Mexico increasingly exerted their own influence on proceedings, and while it would be too much to say the half swung one way and then the other they will be disappointed to go in a goal down at half time.
Nicely poised, lets hope it explodes into life. 45 minutes to go.