Portugal versus Chile in the Confederations Cup semi-final promises to be one of the tightest contests in the tournament’s history. The Euro 2016 winners managed to overcome a 2-2 draw against Mexico to celebrate wins over Russia and New Zealand without conceding a goal. On the other hand, Chile have had to sweat for the results as a 2-0 win over Cameroon was coupled by 1-1 draws against Germany and Australia.
Cristiano Ronaldo once again remains crucial towards Portugal’s quest for their second major trophy, but the talents of the likes of Bernardo Silva and Gelson Martins should not be ignored in the attacking department. A Ronaldo-less Portugal managed to win over France at the Euros last year, and this exhibits the potential within the squad, which has improved further over the past year.
Meanwhile, Chile appear to be all about Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal, who play for Arsenal and Bayern Munich respectively at club level. Both Sanchez and Vidal combined for the opener in the 2-0 win over Cameroon, and the pair are said to have a telepathic communication on the playing field. Portugal’s backline has looked solid in the past two games, but they may have to watch out for the cheeky dink cross from Sanchez which often finds Vidal in the box.
Players to watch for:
Bernardo Silva (Portugal): Silva has been dubbed as the new Lionel Messi during his time at AS Monaco. The attacker was key towards Monaco’s league dominance last term, and he is now in the ranks of Premier League club Manchester City. Silva is an undeniable threat from the right side of the attack, and his pace and trickery reminds some of Barcelona’s Messi.
Eduardo Vargas (Chile): The Tigres forward happens to have a sensational record at international level having bagged 34 goals in 73 games for his nation. In comparison to this, his club career has never taken off with just 65 goals in 270 outings. Vargas benefits from having Sanchez and Vidal in company, and he could be the man for the odd tap-in.
Backing Chile to progress, but there will be goals, 3-2.
Image – Getty