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30 Jul 2016
Portugal, Brazil set up Mundialito showdown
The two favourites will go head to head on Sunday in Cascais.
Two Mundialito heavyweights will battle it out for the 2016 title in Cascais on Sunday after each maintaining their winning starts to the competition.
With 17 title wins between them, the sides racked up big victories on day one and each made it six points from six on Saturday to set up what promises to be a thrilling finale.
Brazil recorded double figures for the second day running in a 16-0 demolition of China that saw Lucao register six times, with Filipe and Bruno Xavier weighing in with hat-tricks.
The Selecao hit the crossbar inside five seconds and, amid a strong start, led through Friday’s hat-trick hero Datinha.
The 12-time winners doubled their lead when Bruno Xavier tapped in after a spilled shot and Lucao’s driven free-kick took a nick in the sand to beat Lin W shortly after the restart.
Filipe’s persistence saw him add a fourth from close range before R. Bokinha found the top corner with a thunderous effort from the right wing and Lucao added his second after a mix-up in the China defence.
Goals from Filipe and Bruno Xavier - the latter completing his hat-trick - either side of a red card for Liu Y S hampered the Chinese cause further going into the final period, which saw Lucao push the score into double figures early on.
The forward was at it again seconds later, before Mauricinho, Lucao, Filipe and R. Bokinha completed the rout with late efforts as Brazil warmed up for their clash with Portugal in style.
The Portuguese were made to sweat as they saw off a spirited USA side in a 6-5 success despite regularly being behind for the first two periods, as the likes of Santos, Perera and Dos Santos proved a frustration for the hosts.
But the in-form Jose Maria helped Portugal win through, setting up a Sunday decider against their traditional beach soccer rivals.
Portugal were rampant against China on Friday but did not have things their own way early on against the US, who went ahead when Santos’ free-kick deceived Andrade.
It drew a reaction from the champions, and the home crowd, that helped Portugal draw level through Jose Maria’s penalty, only for Perera to finish calmly and restore the American advantage.
A wonderful turn and finish from Belchior put Portugal back level but a stubborn US display saw Dos Santos again frustrate the home side with a simple finish.
Be Martins then equalised after a sloppy moment at the back for the States, while quick thinking from Portugal allowed Belchior to give Portugal the lead for the first time from a corner before Coimbra lobbed Toth following the goalkeeper’s throw out.
Canale’s penalty reduced the arrears but when Jose Maria benefitted from a lack of communication in the visitors’ defence, Portugal were ensured the points, and a shot at a sixth Mundialito title.
Brazil 16-0 China
Portugal 6-5 USA
United States v China
Portugal v Brazil