U17 : Day 2 of 2015 Under 17 FIFA World Cup
On Day 2 of the 2015 Under 17 FIFA World Cup will see Mexico, Argentina and Germany.
While day one of the FIFA U-17 World Cup Chile 2015 saw holders Nigeria, hosts Chile and the mighty Brazil make their entrances, day two is every bit as enticing, with Mexico, Argentina and Germany all getting their campaigns under way in what promises to be a very keenly contested Group C. The man responsible for pitching them together at the tournament draw was none other than Chile’s leading all-time goalscorer Marcelo Salas, who had no hesitation in calling it the toughest section in the competition.
Group D also begins on Sunday and looks very evenly matched itself, with Belgium, Mali, Ecuador and Honduras all entertaining hopes of advancing to the last 16. FIFA.com sets the scene for the day’s four matches at Chile 2015, as the tournament bids the capital Santiago farewell and focus turns to the country’s culturally diverse regions.
Match of the day
Mexico-Argentina, Chillan, 18 October 2015, 19:00 (local time)
This meeting is a replay of the UAE 2013 semi-final, an exciting game in which El Tri ran out 3-0 winners. Both sides ended that campaign with defeats, the Mexicans going down by the same scoreline to Nigeria in the final and the Argentinians bowing out with a 4-1 defeat to Sweden in the match for third place. Having won the tournament in 2011 and finished runners-up last time out, the CONCACAF side are obvious title contenders, while La Albiceleste have yet to reach the final, a record they will be hoping to set straight this year.
The other matches
The day’s other game in Group C sees Australia take on fellow competition regulars and UEFA European Under-17 Championship runners-up Germany. Impressive in that tournament, Christian Wuck’s side have serious designs on going all the way in Chile after missing out, like the Australians, on a place at UAE 2013.
Belgium’s Group D meeting with Mali is the first between the two countries in a world finals competition. Fresh from winning the African title for the very first time, an achievement hailed by the whole nation and the Malian president, the high-flying Aiglonnets are brimming with confidence as they embark on their Chilean adventure.
Surprise quarter-finalists in the UAE two years ago, Honduras had little trouble in booking their place at Chile 2015. The hosts of the 2015 CONCACAF U-17 Championship, La Bicolor made it all the way to the final before going down 3-0 to Mexico. Facing them on Sunday will be an Ecuador side that impressed in the South American qualifiers, where they gave as good as they got against both Brazil and Argentina.
Player to watch
Regarded as one of the brightest hopes of German football, Felix Passlack has regularly been compared to FIFA World Cup™ winners Mario Gotze of Bayern Munich and Toni Kroos of Real Madrid. The 17-year-old is a mainstay for the national team and Borussia Dortmund and sports the captain’s armband for both club and country. Formerly a full-back, he now occupies a holding role in midfield, where he brings his first-rate organisational skills to bear. Invited to train with the Dortmund first team during last season’s midwinter break, he has also made several friendly appearances already for the Bundesliga outfit.
14 – In comparison to Group C, Group D features four relatively inexperienced teams who have made only 14 U-17 world finals appearances between them: two for Belgium and four for Mali, Ecuador and Honduras each, just one more than Argentina have managed alone.
“Our aim is to do Malian football proud in this competition, though that’s not all we’re hoping to achieve. We want to go as far as we can, and our dream is to follow in Nigeria’s footsteps,” Mali forward Sidiki Maiga.
Australia-Germany (Estadio Nelson Oyarzun Arenas, Chillan, 16:00)
Mexico-Argentina (Estadio Nelson Oyarzun Arenas, Chillan, 19:00)
Belgium-Mali (Estadio Fiscal, Talca, 16:00)
Honduras-Ecuador (Estadio Fiscal, Talca, 19:00)
Source : FIFA