Mexico was guilty of a lack of spark on offense and took a colorless goalless draw in its visit to Panama in a World Cup qualifier on Friday.
The Mexicans added their fourth draw in five games in the final stage of qualifying to reach the same seven points as the United States and Costa Rica, but with one more game played. Panama has six points.
"It was complicated, I know, but it is a point away," said Mexico defender Carlos Salcido.
Before more than 20,000 fans and an incessant drumming and horns at the Estadio Rommel Fernandez, both teams' offenses suffered.
Mexico coach Jose Manuel de la Torre presented some changes from the side that won 1-0 Tuesday to Jamaica in Kingston, with starting places given to the skilled Javier Aquino and Giovani Dos Santos to generate play on the right. The squad was supplemented with Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez in a move that unbalanced the Panamanian defense.
Aldo De Nigris, who scored the goal in Jamaica, started on the bench and came on for Hernandez in the 80th minute.
Also Friday, Costa Rica edged out Honduras 1-0 thanks to Roy Miller, who reacted quickest in the 25th minute to head home the rebound after Noel Valladares saved a shot from Celso Borges.
Panama will visit the United States on Tuesday, while Mexico faces Costa Rica at the Azteca stadium, before leaving for the Confederations Cup in Brazil.