Confederations Cup: Ronaldo helps Portugal into semi-final as hosts Russian Federation out

Kristopher Nichols
June 25, 2017

A typically robust New Zealand team was outclassed at times and extended its winless Confederations Cup run to 12 games across four editions. "We need to control the game and to show to ourselves, especially, that we can compete under such hard circumstances".

Watch a preview of the Mexico-Russia showdown in the video below. We are playing away from home against the host nation with a lot of support from their fans and who are fighting to qualify.

"I don't know if I am going to play with Ronaldo or not", said Santos.

"We have looked at the New Zealand game, it has helped us to watch their two games here in Russian Federation", said Santos when asked about his impressions of the All Whites.

"I don't see why they can not go on and win this tournament", the English coach said.

"I honestly think that this is a flawless scenario for Mexican football", said Osorio.

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"Three quarters of the squad have never played at this level, and with new players coming through all the time I'm optimistic about the future".

"It's an extraordinary scenario because it gives Mexican football and this group of players the possibility of showing that we have the capacity to take on this responsibility, that we have the talent and the determination to play in this scenario".

New Zealand nearly pulled a goal back on the hour when Doyle's ball across the face of goal from the left found Wood at the far post, but Portugal goalkeeper Rui Patricio recovered to make a sliding block on the line.

"Even if you take Ronaldo out of the team, you still have world-class players like Ricardo Quaresma and Nani, we have a game plan and we won't be over-awed", said Kiwi coach Anthony Hudson. We have 26 or 27 players to choose from but we have incredible belief. In attack, Marcos Rojas will likely set up shop in a free role in behind Kostas Barbarouses who returns to the starting XI and Captain Chris Wood.

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) - Portugal coach Fernando Santos could deny himself the pleasure of seeing Cristiano Ronaldo play against New Zealand on Saturday. "On paper they are certainly better than us".

Ronaldo's fine form has continued in the colours of Portugal, with a brace in a World Cup qualifier against Latvia followed by two efforts at the Confederations Cup - taking him to 56 in 55 games. "We are pleased that we showed a good game but disappointed with the result", Hudson said of the 2-1 loss to Mexico.

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