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Portugal, Mexico reach Confed Cup semifinals

IANS logoIANS 25-06-2017

Portugal on Saturday finished tied with Mexico at seven points apiece after three round-robin matches, but it topped the group based on a +5 goal differential thanks to its 4-0 thrashing of the Kiwis, Efe news reported.

Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoring from the penalty spot after 33 minutes at Saint Petersburg Stadium, while Bernardo Silva scored the second goal for the Iberian squad just five minutes later.

Andre Silva scored the third goal 10 minutes before the final whistle, while Nani piled on with a score in stoppage time.

Mexico, which finished the group phase with a +2 goal differential, came from behind on Saturday to defeat Russia 2-1 at Kazan Arena.

Aleksandr Samedov scored the opening goal of the match for the hosts at the 25-minute mark, while Mexico's Nestor Araujo equalized five minutes later.

Hirving Lozano gave the lead to Mexico when he scored his team's second goal seven minutes after the start of the second half.

Hector Moreno then appeared to give Mexico an insurance goal in the 61st minute, but it was disallowed when the video assistant referee ruled he was offside.

Mexico booked a berth in the semifinals with the win, while Russia was eliminated after finishing third in Group A with three points, followed by New Zealand at the bottom with zero.

Portugal is set to face the Group B runner-up on June 28, while Mexico will square off against the Group B winner on June 29.

Chile and Germany, who are in commanding positions in Group B with four points apiece, will play their final round-robin matches on Sunday versus Australia and Cameroon, respectively.

The Confederations Cup is a prelude to next year's World Cup, which also will be played in Russia.

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