Chile gear up for tough Confed Cup semi-final against Portugal

Posted June 28, 2017

Chile and Germany have booked their tickets for the semi-finals of the Confederations Cup in Russian Federation.

"We conceded a soft penalty, I don't know how that happened and I don't know if it was a penalty or not but that deflated us a bit and five, six minutes later we concede a second goal which took a lot out of us".

Portugal's captain will face tax evasion charges in a Madrid court next month but has dazzled on the pitch in Russian Federation, claiming Man-of-the-Match awards in all three games, netting two goals and providing an assist.

But Pizzi - who made his first appearance of the competition from the bench in the 4-0 victory over New Zealand last Saturday - expects a tough test in the Tatarstan capital.

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"He was in a bit of pain and we hope he will be able to recover, but like his team-mates he is strong, he wants to play", said Pizzi. "Obviously he is a world-class player, but nobody is afraid of him". It is therefore uncertain as to whether he will be fit to continue playing in the tournament.

Santos fielded an attacking line-up packed with experience and resisted the temptation to rest Ronaldo with Portugal still requiring a point to qualify and vying with Mexico and Russian Federation for top spot.

The reigning European champions will be without veteran centre-back Pepe for the crunch clash after he picked up a one-match suspension for a second yellow card of the tournament, while Manchester City new boy Bernardo Silva could also miss out with injury. Raphael Guerreiro is also still recovering from a left ankle blow he suffered in the 1-0 win over Russian Federation.

Chile coach Juan Antonio Pizzi talks with Arturo Vidal during the Confederations Cup, Group B soccer match between Chile and Australia, at the Spartak Stadium in Moscow, Sunday, June 25, 2017.

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The Kiwi keeper was at close quarters with Cristiano Ronaldo for much of the contest in St Petersburg.

It was a typically efficient performance from Portugal who never looked in real danger despite a sluggish start.

Chile's biggest strength lie in their two most famous players, Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal.

Lionel Messi and Argentina or Confederations Cup semifinalist Chile are possible opponents.

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