The 2013 Confederations Cup in Brazil Semi-Finals are set and they should be great matchups with the last three World Cup winners Spain (2010), Italy, (2006), and Brazil (2002) along with Uruguay, a former World Cup Champion and 2010 World Cup semifinalists, set to square off June 26th and June 27th on ESPN. The best teams from the tournament are definitely left standing, but first a quick recap of the remaining games from the first round.
Uruguay defeated Nigeria 2-1, by a laser shot from Diego Forlani, which forced Nigeria into a must win with Spain which they did not prevail with Nigeria losing to Spain 3-0 with Spain’s Jodi Alba adding two goals giving Spain first place in Group B . Spain beat Tahiti 10-0 in the biggest mismatch of the tournament. Uruguay sent Tahiti packing, yea but they still get to go home to Tahiti, an 8-0 beating which moved Uruguay into the semifinals. Brazil beat Italy 4-2 in a good game until the end which gave Brazil first place in Group A and the Italian took second in the group. Mexico beat Japan 2-1 with Chirirato, Javier Hernandez, scoring two goals and missing a penalty kick at the end of the game denying him a hat trick.
The first semifinal is June 26th and highlights an all South American powerhouse matchup, although Messi and Argentina may have something to say about that in next years World Cup, with Uruguay led by Luis Suarez and an aging yet resurgent Diego Forlani hoping to upset host Brazil. Brazil is led by Neymar who has scored a spectacular goal in every game he has played in the tournament so far. The world and ESPN’s Sportcenter have certainly taken notice of soccer’s next big star and he has delivered in style. It should be fantastic matchup with Brazil seeking to assert its dominance once again in South America.
The second semifinal on June 27th is a rematch of the 2012 UEFA EURO Championship between Spain and Italy in which Spain beat Italy 4-0. The two sides have met 31 times to date, resulting in 12 draws, nine wins for Spain and ten victories for Italy. These teams know each other well and Spain’s total football and precision passing led by its host of stars such as Iniesta, Jordi Alba, Xavi will be a tough match up for Italy’s ageless Andrea Pirlo and dynamic yet volatile Mario Balotelli.
Will the dream matchup between Brazil and Spain emerge or will Italy and/or Uruguay play their way to the championship? Either way these should be fantastic games. Leading up to the Final June 30th in soccer crazy Brazil.
6/26 – Brazil vs Uruguay – 2PM
6/27 – Spain vs Italy – 2PM