Our prediction for this match:
Kazan’ Arena will host Sunday’s footbal game between Portugal and Mexico, who face each other in the 2017 FIFA Confederations Cup opener. A Selecao did well to win the 2016 European Championship and seeing that Germany will be without their star players at the upcoming tournament, Cristiano Ronaldo and his teammates are regarded as No. 1 favourites to win the Confederations Cup. Portugal aim to build on a 3-0 win over Latvia, but the game against Mexico will be anything but a walk in the park for the European champions. El Tri are on the right track to book their place at the 2018 FIFA World Cup finals, but they dropped two points in a 1-1 draw with USA on Monday. Carlos Vela found the net against the Yanks and the La Liga ace will be the man to watch in Juan Osorio’s team. Taking everything into account, we predict that both teams are going to find the net in their 2017 Confederations Cup opener.
Highlighted Player (Joao Moutinho):
A versatile midfielder who can operate as a defensive or attacking midfielder, as well as on either flank, Moutinho is a Portugal international playing for AS Monaco. The experienced 30-year-old footballer started his career with Sporting, but moved to great rivals Porto in 2010. Having won 12 major titles between the two clubs combined, Moutinho moved to Monaco in 2013.
A full Portugal international at the age of 18, Moutinho is a regular call-up since the 2006 FIFA World Cup. The 30-year-old was a part of Portugal’s historic success in France this summer when Fernando Santos men lifted their first-ever continental trophy. Despite being a first-team regular with his club AS Monaco, Moutinho has been regularly linked with a move to Serie A and was reportedly offered to Napoli and AC Milan during the summer of 2016.
AS Roma have also expressed their interest in signing the versatile midfielder, but Monaco opted to stay with the club and help Monaco with their UEFA Champions League challenge.
Highlighted Team (Mexico):
Football was brought below the United States border by European immigrants who build the foundations for what went on to become one of the most prominent footballing nations in the world. El Tri have qualified to the total of 15 World Cups and have become one of six nations to qualify successfully for the tournament since 1994.
Alongside Brazil and Germany, Mexico are the only country to make it past the group stage over the last six World Cups so it is fair to say that miners from Cornwall and Spanish exiles fleeing the Civil War made a pretty good job embedding the football gene. Mexico are the reigning CONCACAF champions having beaten the surprise package Jamaica 3-1 in the final. Juan Carlos Osorio’s team is captained by Rafael Marquez who is the fourth most-capped player behind Gerrardo Torrado, Pavel Pardo and Claudio Suarez.
Bayer Leverkusen striker Javier Hernandez is the team’s biggest star and current squad’s top scorer with 81 goals to his name. Chicharito is only eight goals behind Jared Borgetti who is the nation’s top scorer.