Two late goals from Mexico saw them beat Uruguay 3-1 ©Getty Images

Late goals from Rafael Márquez and Hector Herrera gave Mexico a thrilling 3-1 victory over Uruguay at the Copa América Centenario in a match where both sides were reduced to ten men and which began in farcical circumstances at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Arizona.

Organisers of the special edition of the tournament were forced to apologise after Chile’s national anthem, Himno Nacional de Chile, was played instead of Uruguay’s Orientales, la Patria o la Tumba before kick-off in the Group C clash.

Perhaps troubled by the pre-match embarrassment, Uruguay began slowly as Mexico made a rapid start, taking the lead just four minutes in when defender Alvaro Pereira turned Andres Guardado’s cross into his own net.

It got worse for 15-time champions Uruguay, who were without star Barcelona striker Luis Suarez through injury, on the stroke of half-time as Matias Vecino earned a second bookable offence for a challenge on Jesus Corona and was subsequently sent off.

Mexico were then also reduced to ten men as Guardado followed Vecino in being given his marching orders and from the resulting free-kick, captain Diego Godin headed the South American outfit level.

As the pulsating contest veered towards a draw, 37-year-old Márquez put Mexico back in front with five minutes remaining as he steered a well-hit strike into the top corner.

Uruguay pressed forward in search of another equaliser, leaving themselves exposed to the counter-attack, and Mexico duly took advantage when Herrera converted from close range to put the result beyond all doubt.

Venezuela got their campaign off to a winning start by beating Jamaica 1-0
Venezuela got their campaign off to a winning start by beating Jamaica 1-0 ©Getty Images

“He’s a real player, a great person and professional and we follow him,” Guardado said of veteran Márquez.

“It gives confidence to us, to himself, our country and our team.

“In reality, he is a player we need and he’s here and I hope he keeps going and lasts even longer.”

In the other match in Group C, 10-man Jamaica’s miserable run continued as they were beaten 1-0 by Venezuela at Soldier Field in Chicago.

The Caribbean side, who had lost all three previous Copa América matches by the same scoreline, began brightly and were close to going ahead in the 11th minute as Je-Vaughn Watson crashed a header against the crossbar.

Jamaica were made to pay for that missed opportunity as Venezuela took the lead four minutes later thanks to Josef Martinez, whose shot went under goalkeeper Andre Blake and into the net.

Hopes of a Jamaican comeback were further dented shortly after as Rodolph Austin was given a straight red card for a challenge on Tomas Rincon, before Venezuela managed to hang on to earn their sixth win in 59 Copa América matches.