Everton Under-19s exited the Dallas Cup after a 2-0 defeat to Monterrey on Wednesday evening.
Having lost to FC Dallas in their opening group game, the young Blues picked up three crucial points when beating Maccabi Haifa in their second.
That meant they had to beat their Mexican opponents and hope other results went their way in order to reach the semi-finals.
Delial Brewster – on target against Maccabi – headed over the bar early on as the Toffees made a lively start.
But Daniel Martinez fired home from 18 yards to put a dent in Everton’s chances of reaching the knockout stage.
Goalkeeper Ben Pierce denied Martinez with a solid stop after the Monterrey man had created space for himself, leaving it 1-0 at the break.
After the interval, Brewster was only denied a shot on goal by a fantastic challenge by Kevin Fernando Tala after being set free by Daniel Bramall, while Monterrey again threaten through Jonathan Gonzalez and Juan Jose Siquiera.
The Mexican side would double their lead though when Gonzalez beat Pierce from the spot after Nathan Moore had fouled Martinez.
Still Everton came forward and Anthony Gordon shot wide after a beating his man on the left side of the box.
But the Blues’ task was made all the more difficult when Liam Morris received a red card with quarter of an hour remaining.
The Toffees still huffed and puffed but Monterrey closed the game out to book their place in the knockout stages.