Confederations Cup Road To Finals: Portugal vs. Chile
By Peter Phillips
Portugal is trying to add more bling to its trophy collection by winning the 2017 Confederations Cup. The team first needs to defeat South American Champions Chile before advancing to the finals of the tournament, where they will face either Germany or Mexico. The match will take place on Wednesday and is scheduled to begin at 1 PM. ET.
Portugal faced New Zealand in the final game of the group stage and made quick work of the Kiwis, defeating the team 4-0. The victory showed fans just how good Portugal’s offensive skills are when they’re playing at their best.
Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoreboard for his team when he made a penalty shot in the 33rd minute. Five minutes later, Bernardo Silva made it a two score game.
New Zealand put up a valiant effort defensively in the second half but Portugal kept pressing and added two more goals from Andre Silva and Nani in the final 10 minutes of the match.
Portugal and their fans will be hoping for another offensive explosion against Chile but that might be easier said than done because Chile has only allowed two goals during this tournament. Chile rounded up group play with a 1-1 draw against Australia. The draw cost them a chance to win the division, which would have given them a more favorable matchup against Mexico.
Chile was heavily favored against Australia, but the team did not come ready to play. Chile allowed Australia to take a quick lead in the first half and didn’t find the back of the net until the 68th minute when Martin Rodriguez scored the equalizer. Even though they are a better team than Australia, Chile was fortunate to even the draw.
Despite the disappointing result, Chile is still a very solid offensive team with four goals in the tournament so far but they will need to play much better than they did on Sunday if they want to advance past Portugal.
Both teams have played good defense so far in the tournament. In three games, Portugal allowed two goals, which is one of the reasons they have been difficult to defeat. However, they are facing arguably the best team they have played in the tournament, so it will be interesting to see how they approach Chile defensively.
Chile has also allowed only two goals in the tournament. Making the feat more impressive is the fact they were able to hold Germany to one goal. This showed how good the team can be when they assert themselves defensively, but the fact that they were only able to score one goal against the same team that gave up two goals against Australia makes me somewhat cautious to take them.
Portugal vs Chile – Possible Lineups
Rui Patricio – Eliseu, Bruno Alves, Jose Fonte, Nelson Semedo – Moutinho, William Carvalho – Quaresma, Bernardo Silva – Cristiano Ronaldo, André Silva
Coach: Fernando Santos
Bravo – Mena, Medel, Roco, Isla – Vidal, Diaz, Aranguiz – Sánchez, Vargas, Fuenzalida
Coach: Juan Antonio Pizzi
Portugal vs Chile – Match Stats
This is only the third match between the two countries. Portugal has a winning record against Chile (W1 D1 L0).
The last match between the two countries was in 2011 and ended in a 1-1 draw.
Pick and Prediction
This is going to be a closer match than most expect but Portugal’s offensive prowess will be too much for Chile to handle. Cristiano Ronaldo will be the difference maker and Portugal will get the win.