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Confederations Cup update

Confederations Cup Semi-finals Portugal 0-0 Chile (0-3 pens)


Claudio Bravo saved all three of Portugal’s penalties in the shoot-out after a goalless 120 minutes, with winners Chile set to play Germany or Mexico in the Confederations Cup 2017 final

Match Report

Chile 0-0 Portugal; Chile win 3-0 on penalties

Superstar Chile goalkeeper Claudio Bravo denies Ricardo Quaresma, João Moutinho and Nani for an exciting finish after a 0-0 scoreboard resulted from the first 120 minutes in the beautiful semi-final between Portugal and Chile. Chile national team manager, Juan Antonio Pizzi, predicted “it is going to be a beautiful semi-final” ahead of the clash, and he was correct. The two powerful sides were equal in attack and firm defense and Chile and Portugal could not score a single goal over 120 minutes. In the subsequent shoot-out, Chile goalie Claudio Bravo saved three penalties to send the South American champions into the 2017 Confederations Cup final against either German or Mexico. Since 2015, mighty Portugal won the European Championship in Paris and La Roja twice won Conmebol’s Copa América and each manager had spoken of a desire to win the upcoming showpiece in Russia.

Within six minutes, a stunning pass from Alexis Sánchez found Eduardo Vargas alone in the penalty box, only for Rui Patrício to make an extraordinary save. Then superstar Real Madrid striker Cristiano Ronaldo charged down the left flank and placed a perfectly weighted long pass to André Silva, who in turn sent a goal attempt straight at Bravo, who saved the points. There were nearly a dozen attempts in the first half from both sides. Neither one of the continental champions were able to break the deadlock in the first 45 minutes, with Southampton’s Portuguese right-back Cédric able to stop top Arsenal goalscorer Alexis Sánchez who reportedly may move to Manchester City during the summer Premier League transfer window. The second half was similar to the first. Arturo Vidal outjumped Benfica’s Eliseu but his header attempt went into the stands. Vargas produced an exquisite bicycle kick that went into the outstretched gloves of Patrício. Cristiano Ronaldo sent his free-kick attempt wide in the 65th minute.

As the scoreless game moved into extra time, Portugal increased pressure against a tiring Chile. But still, the South American champions continued their attack as Sánchez’s attempt went just wide from Mauricio Isla’s cross in extra time as the clock ticked towards a penalty shootout. Chile twice hit posts in the 118th minute. but Portugal held on for spot-kicks. Chile previously won the 2015 and 2016 Copa América on penalties and looked confident as Vidal calmly converted the opener. Claudio Bravo then saved attempts from Ricardo Quaresma, João Moutinho and Nani to secure his side’s place in the final against either Germany or Mexico. After the victory, Chile captain, Bravo, who missed the second half of Manchester City’s English Premier League campaign because of a calf injury, talked about his outstanding penalty shootout performance. “It was not just luck,” said Bravo. “Towards the end, we were quite tired but we were still passionate, playing with our head and our heart.”

Chile manager Pizzi said his side was looking forward to a short break before the tournament final concludes in St Petersburg. “First we need to rest,” said Pizzi. “We will see how the players recover and then make our decisions depending on that. Now we have three days to recover, rest and properly plan for the game on Sunday.” Portugal manager, Fernando Santos, was positive after the game. “Their goalkeeper was fantastic,” said Santos. “I always defend my players, that is my responsibility, given I chose them to score the penalties.” Prior to the match, fans at Kazan Arena, which will host six matches at the 2018 World Cup, held up a banner. “Looking forward to seeing you again.”

Squads

Portugal
Rui Patricio; Cedric, Bruno Alves, Fonte, Eliseu; Bernardo Silva, William Carvalho, Adrien Silva, Andre Gomes; Ronaldo, Andre Silva. Subs: Jose Sa, Beto, Luis Neto, Joao Moutinho, Nelson Semedo, Danilo Pereira, Pizzi, Nani, Gelson Martins, Quaresma.

Chile
Bravo; Isla, Medel, Jara, Beausejour; Aranguiz, Diaz, Hernandez; Vidal; Sanchez, Vargas Subs: Toselli, Herrera, Mena, Roco, Silva, Fuenzalida, Sagal, Paulo Diaz, Gutierrez, Rodriguez, Valencia, Puch.

Meanwhile, while Portugal crashed out of the 2017 Confederations Cup at the hands of Chile, Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo was happy anyway after he announced the birth of his twin boys. "I was in the service of the National Team, as it always happens, body and soul, even though I knew my two sons were born,” said Ronaldo on Facebook. "Unfortunately, we have not been able to achieve the main sporting objective we wanted, but I am sure we will continue to give the Portuguese joy. The President of the Portuguese Football Federation and the National Selector had an attitude today that sensitized me and I will not forget. I am very happy to finally be able to be with my children for the first time."

Portuguese television network had already revealed that Ronaldo had become the father to twins via a surrogate. Ronaldo's oldest son, Cristiano Jr., was born in 2010. The Portuguese international Ronaldo last year at this time, was in the process of helping his national team win Euro 2016. In December he earned his fourth Ballon d'Or. Earlier in June, Ronaldo scored twice to propel Real Madrid to their 12th European Cup, completing a domestic and continental double. Ronaldo’s Portugal followed in the tracks of Lionel Messi’s Argentina have gone every time they’ve faced Chile in a knockout - losing on penalties.

Former FC Barcelona keeper Claudio Bravo was intense, stopping all three penalties he faced. Ronaldo waited until the fifth kick to shoot and did not get a chance to score. Just as it happened in a shootout against Spain in Euro 2012, he didn’t even get a chance to shoot as Portugal lost the shootout before the fifth kick. Ter Stegen helped Germany secure a place in the last four of the Confederations Cup, playing the full 90 minutes in both a 1-1 draw against Chile and a 3-1 win over Cameroon. He and his teammates will battle it out with Mexico for a spot in the final.

FIFA Confederations Cup

The FIFA Confederations Cup is an international association football tournament for national teams, currently held every four years by FIFA.

Number of teams: 8 (from 6 confederations)
Most successful team(s): Brazil (4 titles)
Current Champion: Brazil national football team

Next, Germany face Mexico in the Confederations Cup semi-final on Thursday, June 29 that will decide what team will face Chili in the Confederations Cup Final 2017 match. There will also be an additional match to decide third place. Buy great cheap, authentic national football team tickets for World Cup 2018 Russia and other football tournaments from 1st4FootballTickets.com!

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