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Let's hear it for the boys in green

WHAT goes around comes around. We've been waiting seven months for revenge against France, and last night it was dished out in spectacular fashion at the World Cup as a linesman's call handed Mexico a crucial opening goal against Les Bleus.

The result paved the way for a humiliating 2-0 defeat for France -- who infamously made to South Africa after the ref failed to spot a Thierry Henry handball in the lead-up to their winning goal in a 2-1 aggregate win over Ireland last November.

Nowhere were the cheers louder than in Buskers Bar in Temple Bar, where a posse of Mexican and Irish supporters had gathered in a display of defiance against the common enemy.

Event organiser Roberto Garcia, of the Mexican Embassy, laughingly admitted: "I don't think the Irish are really here to support Mexico, they're just here to see France lose!"

Whatever the motives, the fans in Buskers drummed up a spectacular atmosphere amid a flurry of flags and bunting, with free Mexican supporters' T-shirts handed out to attendees.



Unsuspecting

And with the Mexican team decked out in green and white, an unsuspecting passer-by could have been forgiven for thinking it was an Irish squad that had lined out against the Gallic side.

Unfortunately, the 'hand of Henry' put paid to that last November, leaving it to the Mexicans to settle the score on our behalf.

Among the revellers was Maria Garcia, who has been living and working in Dublin for 11 years.

"I have to be anti-France tonight but that's just because they're playing Mexico," she laughed.

"I think the atmosphere is great and our team did great. The altitude in Mexico is higher so it can be hard for the team in South Africa."

For Mexican-American Angelica Sandoval, last night's crunch game happily coincided with a short holiday in Dublin.

"I'm just here for four days so this is all part of the fun," she explained. "I know what happened to Ireland, and I'm really hoping Mexico do well in the tournament. I was so surprised to come here and find all these Mexican supporters, it's a great atmosphere."

Buskers' Bar was a long way from home for Nancy Molina, who revealed: "I'm living here because my husband works in Ireland. We're so far from Mexico now but the embassy has made a really big effort to make a great party for us all."

The excitement in the bar reached fever-pitch when a long-threatened goal from Mexico finally materialised in the 64th minute. And delighted Mexicans watched in a state of near-disbelief as their team sealed the deal with a second goal from a penalty 13 minutes later.

Fans burst into song to cheer on their team as multiple TV screens replayed the two magic moments.

Adding insult to injury for a star-studded but shell-shocked French team, Ireland's nemesis Thierry Henry was left to stew on the subs' bench throughout the embarrassing defeat.

Ecstatic student Nanette Mendoza took time out from her celebrations to explain: "In every World Cup we expect a lot from Mexico but we have a very good team this year and they are growing all the time."

The student, who will shortly return home to Mexico, added: "I saw the match against Ireland so I'm sure Irish people were all supporting us against France!"

With their first win against a top European team under the belt, the victorious Mexicans will line out once again next Tuesday against Uruguay.


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