FIFA U17 World cup Semifinal round up
24 began the inaugurated international tournament to be held on Indian soil and now two successful reached the conclusion of the grandest footballing festival at the U17 level.
The semifinals of the FIFA U17 world cup rang the bell of its presence when four best nations of the tournament, started from October 26, held their nerves to outdid one another to resemble their power on the charming stage, the finale of the mightiest.
Celebrated footballing nations of England and Brazil hosted the first semis in the Yuba Bharati stadium after there was a shift in the venue of this fixture originally planned to be held in Guwahati due to heavy rainfall.
U17 Euro champions Spain accepted U17 Afro cup winners Mali’s challenge at Dy Patil Stadium in Navy Mumbai in the other semifinal.
The most high voltage clash in the scrip of this occasion was Brazil and England without any doubt. Kolkata fans cheered for their luck to witness such a clash of football crafted nations before their eyes with the fixture rescheduled from Guwahati due to abnormal condition of the pitch due to rain. In front of 63,881 attended crowd, England toppled the Selecao by 3-1 much of the dismay of the fans who were in favour of the yellow and green nation to qualify. But the young brigade of three lions won’t care because they continue to advice international tournaments of this year. Once again Liverpool youth prospect Rhian Brewster shines in the bigger stages of the competition, scoring his second hat-trick in knockout stage and lifting England to fight for another major trophy this year having secured the U20 world cup and reaching the U17 Euro finals. Brazil today lacked the killer instinct to get something of this game and were bruised by the English knives. The Selecao samba dance was missed by the spectators instead they witnessed a rising pack of talents who are ready to grab the trophy.
Brewster administered England attack was glowing. Inside ten minutes, the kid from the Anfield club wrapped his first of the night to stun Brazil from Hudson Odoi’s brilliant cross which left the Brazilian defense stranded, pointing out the calamity that was coming over them.
Brazil reconciled their efforts into a goal when paulinho’s long ranger from a distance rebounded from the keeper and fell to Wesley who sneaked past for the equaliser to set the tone high. The place was absolutely jumping at that moment. But what it looked to be an end to end breathe shortened game, it did not turned around like that. Meanwhile, Brazil missed a glorious opportunity to set their nose in front which turned out to be the turning point of the game, according to the pundits. England took full advantage of this with Brewster lashing for his and country’s second to give a definite lead before the break. No further poke from Brazil in the remaining half allowed the team with heads high to damage all sort of hopes for the South American nation by Brewster final shot at target in the 78th minute to complete his hat-trick and smoothing England’s proceedings to reach the final. That was also the teenager’s eighth strike of the campaign.
In the other game, Spain famed the same scoreline against high flying Mali in Mumbai to grab the second finalist spot. Barcelona academy product Abel Ruiz reconned his attacking brilliance to hit two along with Ferran Torress, placing his name in the score sheet in second knockout fixture. Mali had little to do all night but increased the speed of their running in search of what became a mere conciliation at last. N’Diaye pulled one back for the Afro champions never to be determined again.
Ruiz and Torress combined again to send the message of a grand stand finish in the final for the test of their second achievement of the year but first in the U17 world cup.
Ruiz smacked the first on 26th minute to break the deadlock in an outstanding fashion following Sergio Gomez’s pass. He quickly collected his second of the night after the restart to put Spain in a stable position in the match. Mali meanwhile missed descent enough chances to roll the ball inside the net. Though, they picked up some confidence when Diaye scored. But any possible turnover hopes was melted once Ferran Torress exhibited his moment of magic to perish them for the game’s last scoring.
So it is a repeat of the U17 Euro championship when England and Spain met earlier this year. The Spanish kings went on victorious that time winning the tie breaker but it is unpredictable to declare the winner between this two holding sheer piece of quality and talent.
The final will be held at the salt lake stadium in the ‘city of joy’ Kolkata on 28th October to unfold the deserving winner of the FIFA U17 world cup.