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Portugal seals dramatic victory over Mexico in extra-time; clinches third place at Confederations Cup

Portugal Earned A Dramatic Victory As They Beat Mexico 2-1 To Earn A Third Place At The Confederations Cup In Moscow. Adrien Silva Scored An Extra-time Penalty To Help Portugal Overcome The Mexican Challenge.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Rahul Mishra | Updated on: 03 Jul 2017, 12:22:54 AM
Portugal beat mexico in Confederations Cup

New Delhi:

Portugal scripted a dramatic 2-1 victory over Mexico in extra time to clinch a third place finish at the Confederations Cup in Moscow. Adrien Silva scored an extra-time penalty to help Portugal overcome the Mexican challenge towards a consolation win.

Luis Neto bundled into his own net to hand Mexico a 54th-minute lead, but Pepe stabbed home a stoppage-time equaliser to force an extra 30 minutes at Spartak Stadium.     

Silva then struck his first international goal after ahandball inside the box on 104 minutes, while both sides finished with 10 men as Nelson Semedo was dismissed for Portugal before Raul Jimenez saw red for Mexico.     

World champions Germany face Copa America holders Chile later in the final in Saint Petersburg. "It was a really tough battle but we played very good in attack, we managed to create plenty of chances and I think it's a deserved win for us," said centre-back Pepe.     

"Of course we wanted to play in the final, to clash forthe Confederations Cup. But after we failed to get that result, we needed to show our best in the third-place game.Luckily we did everything right."     

European champions Portugal were without captain Cristiano Ronaldo after the Real Madrid star was released from the squad to return home to meet his newborn twins.     

Portugal and Mexico drew 2-2 in the opening game of thegroup stage, when Hector Moreno salvaged a last-gasp point for the Gold Cup winners, but were left fighting for a consolation prize in the Russian capital.     

Portugal should have gone in front in the drizzling rain on 17 minutes when Andre Silva was upended by 38-year-old Rafael Marquez, with the video assistant referee stepping into award the spot-kick.     

But Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa flung himselfsuperbly to his right to tip Andre Silva's low spot-kick roundthe post. Rui Patricio produced a sharp stop to deny Javier Hernandez, Mexico's all-time leading scorer, from close range on the half hour, but the Portugal keeper was beaten shortly after the break.     

Hernandez's cross from the byline floated beyond CarlosVela and Patricio, with Zenit St Petersburg centre-back Netounwittingly turning the ball home. Portugal went in pursuit of an equaliser and GelsonMartins -- replacing Ronaldo in attack -- was denied by anexcellent save from Ochoa with just over an hour played.     

But Ochoa was beaten in the first minute of injury timeas Pepe lunged to get on the end of Ricardo Quaresma's curlingright-wing cross to force extra time.

Silva, on as a substitute, then grabbed the winner justbefore the end of the first period of extra time, burying apenalty after Miguel Layun handled in the box.     

Semedo was then sent off on 106 minutes after picking upa second yellow card, but Mexico's numerical advantage wasswiftly wiped out when Jimenez received his marching orders.     

"Both teams played some intelligent football today butPortugal were just slightly better," Ochoa admitted. "We put them under pressure late in extra time but failedto level again, like we did in our first meeting here." 

With PTI inputs

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First Published : 02 Jul 2017, 11:45:00 PM