Take a bow Efra! The young LA Galaxy attacker and Mexican youth international stepped up to a free kick outside the area in the 79th minute of the FIFA U-17 World Cup semifinals with Mexico down a goal and buried it with ease.
Restarts from a central position 25 yards out or so are notoriously difficult for goalkeepers to adequately prepare for. You can’t build an effective wall and a competent finisher can beat you on either side of the net, turning the exercise into a guessing game. Efrain Alvarez was that competent attacker, gliding the ball over the wall and around the Netherlands keeper with a tasty blend of finesse, power and swerve.
Mexico would go on to defeat the Netherlands in penalty kicks, coming from behind to win out 4-3 thanks to the heroics of goalkeeper Eduardo García Mendoza.
Here’s to hoping Efra sees more first team minutes in 2020.