Posts Tagged ‘u20 world cup’

Marítimo Goalkeeper José Sá Hopes To See Regular Action

Marítimo Goalkeeper José Sá Hopes To See Regular Action

This is the third and final article of a feature series exclusive to Futebol Factory that profiles the most promising Portuguese youngsters. Later this week, this website will be publishing an overview of all 21 players named in our series.

Here now are the last seven Portuguese young players that could have break out seasons this year.

José Sá, Maritimo, Goalkeeper

The 20-year old made a big name for him self this summer at the U20 World Cup. He certainly raised his profile in Maritimo’s opening match this season against Benfica, back stopping the Madeira-based club to a 2-1 win. The former Benfica youth player looks to have a bright future ahead of him.

With Maritimo’s former number one goalkeeper Romain Salin departing to Rio Ave, manager Pedro Martins has no proven goalkeeper. This could be his year to establish himself as a starting goalkeeper and perhaps an option for the Seleção.

Nuno Reis, Sporting Lisbon, Centre Back

A promising player whose future looks uncertain at the moment. Reis formed an excellent partnership at the centre of defence with Rio Ave’s Roderick Miranda at the 2011 U20 World Cup where Portugal finished second. He played with Olhanense last season.

The 22-year old does not appear to be part of Sporting manager Leonardo Jardim’s immediate plans. Currently playing with Sporting B squad in the second division, a loan deal seems likely.

Ricardo Ferreira, Olhanense, Centre Back

Born to Portuguese parents in Canada, Ricardo Ferreira is a former FC Porto youth player. In 2011, he was signed by Serie A giants AC Milan but never played a professional match for them. Last year, he was loaned to Serie B squad Empoli where he found playing time difficult to come by.

Ferreira was released this past summer by the Italian club and signed with Olhanense. He should find more playing time with Abel Xavier club, but unless the former Portuguese international proves to be a better manager than most people expect, the Algarve-club should be battling hard to stay in the top division.

Diogo Figueiras, Sevilla, Right-Back

The 22-year old was signed by La Liga club Sevilla this summer after an impressive season at Paços Ferreira. The club’s sporting director Monchi has praised his speed and technical ability, although it looks like he will have to play second-fiddle to Coke for now.

Figueiras lists former Sevilla right-back Dani Alves as a personal role model. He told journalists at his official unveiling in July, “Daniel Alves (Now with FC Barcelona) is an inspiration to me because he is the best full-back in the world. I am an ambitious player and I hope that I could one day reach his level. I am an offensive-minded full-back.”

Flávio Ferreira, Malaga, Centre Back/Defensive Midfielder

Signed by Malaga in the summer from Académica, where he primarily played at centre back last season. The 21-year old could also pay in defensive midfield. As of late August, Ferreira was battling a back injury that was to be evaluated from week to week.

With Malaga losing several quality players and their manager this summer, Ferreira could be given an opportunity to shine this year at the Estadio La Rosaleda. He should feel very welcome in Andalusia this season with Portuguese players Duda, Eliseu and Vitorino Antunes on the squad.

Ricardo Alves, Belenenses, Midfielder

Newly-promoted clubs are always likely to have exciting young talented. 20-year old Ricardo Alves played himself into Belenenses’ starting XI last season when promotion was all but assured. His performances were enough to earn him a spot of Portugal’s U20 World Cup squad where he played three matches.

This season in the top division, the suburban Lisbon club are still without a proven goal scorer and will likely rely on its creativity in midfield to win matches. Alves will be counted on to produce this season.

Tiago Silva, Belenenses, Midfielder

Another promising midfielder at Belenenses. Silva played regularly last season in the second division, scoring four goals in 31 matches for the club. Silva, along with Ricardo Alves could provide the basis for a strong Belenenses midfield this year.

The 20-year old is more attack-minded than Alves and will need to be good this season if Mitchell van der Gaag’s club is to prevent relegation. They got off to a poor start in match day one with a 3-0 defeat at home to Rio Ave.

Related posts

FEATURE: 7 Portuguese Young Players Who Could Break Out This Season, Part 1

FEATURE: 7 Portuguese Young Players Who Could Break Out This Season, Part 2

PORTUGAL: 7 Young Players That Could Help The Seleção Reach World Cup 2014

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Bruno-Gama-celebra-gol-Deportivo

Deportivo winger Bruno Gama was touted as the next great player in Portuguese football when he represented his country at the 2007 U20 World Cup in Canada. At that point, a selection to the Seleção seemed inevitable.

At 25 years of old, Gama will realize that dream this week against Holland after being called up by Portugal manager Paulo Bento as an injury replacement for Wolfsburg’s Vieirinha.

“I am very happy, I did not expect this at all. I was enjoying my day of rest (When he received the message), and it happened when I was in Portugal. It is a dream come true,” he said in a news conference on Monday in Óbidos.

“It gave me a lot of hope. I need to continue to work hard and help the squad. There are excellent players at my position. I know that there are stronger options, but I have confidence that I will continue to be selected,” he added.

Like Vieirinha, Gama was a talented young player and an automatic choice for Portugal’s junior squads who took a little longer than expected to reach the heights of the Seleção.

A product of Sporting Braga’s youth academy, Gama was signed by FC Porto in 2004 for €750,000. A large sum for a young player.

For the next few seasons he played with Porto’s B squad, before loan spells at Braga and Vitória Setúbal. Gama would only play one official league match for Porto until he was released in 2009 at the age of 21.

During this time, he continued to be a prominent player on Portugal’s junior squads gaining 78 caps and scoring 25 goals.

Gama would sign with Rio Ave in 2009, playing two seasons and was almost completely written off by pundits everywhere.

In 2011, he would move to Spain, signing a deal with Galician club Deportivo La Coruña. It did not seem like an important step in his career at the time, especially since the club was currently languishing in Spain’s Segunda División.

In his first season, Gama helped the club gain promotion to the top-level of Spanish football. The following year, with fellow Portuguese international Pizzi playing on the opposite wing, Gama had a strong season scoring 6 goals and pitching in another 5 assists in 38 La Liga matches.

His production was not enough to prevent Deportivo from being relegated last season. However, Gama is unlikely to remain with the club for long. Both Sporting Lisbon and Sevilla have been rumoured to be interested in signing him before the end of the transfer period on August 31st.

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Anthony Lopes Has Shown Some Great Promise With Lyon This Pre-Season

Anthony Lopes Has Shown Some Great Promise With Lyon This Pre-Season

Futebol Factory is profiling some of Portugal’s most promising young talent in three feature articles ahead of the new football season.

Anthony Lopes, Olympique Lyonnais, Goalkeeper

A quality goalkeeper that has played for Portugal at the U21 level. French-born Lopes played the last 5 Ligue 1 matches last season for the French club and has already figured prominently in Europa League qualifying matches so far this month. He also impressed in Lyon’s 4-0 defeat of Nice in the first match of the Ligue 1 season.

The French-club is currently without a proven stopper and could be tempted to go with Lopes. They have also shown some great faith in him by signing Lopes to a contract extension that will see him stay with the club until 2016. Rui Patrício is the uncontested Portuguese number one but it never hurts to have a quality alternative.

Miguel Vitor, PAOK, Centre Back

Unceremoniously released by Benfica this off season, the central defender was quickly signed by Greek giants PAOK. Vitor has played alongside former Benfica player Kostas Katsouranis in PAOK’s Europa League qualifying matches against Metalist Kharkiv.

A very prominant figure with Portugal’s U21 squads, the 24-year old is expected to finally get his chance to play everyday in Greece. A chance he was never really given in Portugal. He joins a club that has been good to Portuguese talent in the past, including Sérgio Conceição and Vieirinha.

Ricardo Esgaio, Sporting Lisbon, Winger/Right-Back

An exciting player who is a big part of Sporting’s amazing pool of young talent. The 20-year old recently signed a long-term extension with the club that will see him under contract until 2018. He also played in the U20 World Cup.

Supremely talented and versatile, Esgaio scored 17 goals in 27 matches for Sporting B squad in the second division last year. However, this might not yet be the year that Esgaio makes the big leap to the senior side. Sporting has depth on the wings, and Leonardo Jardim might decide that it is better for him to continue to develop in the second division or possibly on loan.

Sérgio Oliveira, FC Porto (On Loan at Paços de Ferreira), Midfielder

Sérgio Oliveira has been in the spotlight since he was the youngest player ever to play for FC Porto’s senior side at the age of 17. He has found opportunities at the Cidade Invicta very limited since then, being loaned out to several clubs in recent years.

He played last season with Porto’s B squad in the second division, scoring 5 goals in 29 matches. Still only 21 years of age, Oliveira should receive playing time at Paços de Ferreira. A natural central midfielder, Oliveira is a free-kick specialist.

João Mário, Sporting Lisbon, Midfielder

Recently signed to a long-term extension, João Mário is one of the most talked about young players in Portugal today. The central midfielder captained Portugal’s U20 squad at this summer’s World Cup. For many it has always been a matter of when, not if.

Sporting’s new manager Leonardo Jardim has shown a willingness to ‘test’ young players in the past with Braga. However, João Mário might find it hard to play regularly this season because of the club’s investments in Adrien Silva, Andre Martins, Andre Santos and Zakaria Labyad.

Filipe Chaby, Sporting Lisbon, Attacking Midfielder

Another supremely promising midfielder from Sporting’s famed academy. The 19-year old missed most of last season with a serious knee injury however, he has played very well this summer in exhibition matches for the senior squad.

Recently signed to a long-term extension, Chaby will be hard-pressed to earn a position on Leonardo Jardim’s starting XI given the club’s depth in young midfielders. However, Chaby is certainly a player to watch going forward.

Aladje, Sassuolo, Striker

Born in Guinea-Bissau and currently playing in Italy, Aladje has enjoyed a meteoric rise over the last two months. A surprise addition to Portugal’s squad for the U20 Toulon Tournament, Aladje wrestled the starting striker position away from Betinho. He would score 3 goals in 4 matches at the U20 World Cup and was even profiled in an article on the FIFA website.

Until now he has only played football in Italy’s lower division but this appears likely to change after he moved to Serie B graduates Sassuolo this summer. Aladje is part of a promising generation of young Portuguese strikers that could finally deliver the country a major trophy.

Related Posts:

FEATURE: 7 Portuguese Young Players Who Could Break Out This Season, Part 1

FEATURE: 7 Portuguese Young Players Who Could Break Out This Season, Part 3

PORTUGAL: 7 Young Players That Could Help The Seleção Reach World Cup 2014

Portugal demonstrated that they were a team to be reckoned with at this year’s under-20 World Cup after an impressive 5-0 defeat of Cuba. The Seleção win group B will now await the results of other matches to find out who they will face in the round of 16.

After two unconvincing games against Nigeria and South Korea, Edgar Borges’ Portugal were clinical in front of the Cuban goal and more stable at the back. Leading the way again was Sporting Lisbon’s Bruma who scored twice and assisted on goals by Aladje and Ricardo Pereira.

Borges went back to the forward trio of Aladje, Ricardo Pereira and Bruma up front against Cuba. In midfield, FC Porto’s Tozé received his first start of the tournament in place of André Gomes. Tiago Ferreira replaced Edgar Ié in central defence, while João Cancelo replaced Tomás Dabó at right-back.

In the 15th minute of play, Bruma found some room on the left side and crossed the ball to Ricardo Pereira who scored. Bruma would set up a goal by Aladje in the 37th minute before scoring just before the half.

In the second half, Bruma scored his fifth goal in the tournament off a great cross into the box by Tiago Silva. Tozé would score in the 69th minute, giving Portugal a convincing 5-0 victory over Cuba.

VIDEO: Highlights: Portugal 5 – Cuba 0 (U20 World Cup)

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PORTUGAL: Bruma Joins Squad That Will Represent Portugal At the U-20 World Cup

MATCH REVIEW: Bruma Lifts Portugal To Victory Over Nigeria At The U20 World Cup

MATCH REVIEW: Portugal Slumps To Draw Against South Korea At U20 World Cup

Two goals by Sporting Lisbon’s Bruma helped Portugal beat Nigeria 3-2 in group B action at the U20 World Cup in Turkey.

Manager Edgar Borges fielded a starting XI with an attacking force of Aladje as the striker along side Bruma and FC Porto’s new signing Ricardo Pereira. Maritimo’s José Sá started in goal and made a number of outstanding saves at key periods of the match.

Benfica’s André Gomes started in midfield, alongside Sporting Lisbon’s João Mário and Belenenses’ Ricardo Alves. Noticeably missing from the match was Sporting’s central defender Tiago Ilori whose father is Nigerian.

After a nervous start by both clubs, the Seleção were the first to strike at the half-hour mark. Sporting Lisbon’s João Mário put Bruma in on goal and he made no mistake putting Portugal ahead. A few minutes later, the Nigerian goalkeeper mishandled a shot by Ricardo Pereira. Aladje was able to score easily on the rebound.

Portugal went into half-time with a comfortable 2-0 lead despite some defensive mistakes and careless giveaways by the midfield. The problems continued early in the second half and Nigeria made them pay. Abdul Ajagun would score in the 57th and 67th minute of play to even the score.

Nigeria’s hopes would soon be dashed when second half substitute Ricardo Esgaio set up Bruma for his second of the night. Edgar Borges’ team held on the rest of the way to open the U20 World Cup with a win.

Borges said after the match that he was happy with the victory, but stressed that the squad needs to minimize give aways and tighten up defensively. “I am very satisfied with the victory, but the truth is that it could have been an easier win. Nigeria are an excellent squad and caused us many problems,” Borges said.

“I would have prefered not to have conceded so many goals to the opposition, but we still did enough to win. The victory was entirely deserving.”

Portugal will play South Korea on Monday. A victory would assure them a position in the knock-out stage.

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PORTUGAL: Bruma Joins Squad That Will Represent Portugal At the U-20 World Cup

SCOUTING REPORT: Sporting Lisbon’s Dynamic Winger Bruma

GIL VICENTE - SPORTING    ( 2012/2013 )

Sporting Lisbon winger Bruma was the most notable addition to Portugal’s U-20 squad that will participate in the upcoming World Cup in Turkey. Sporting’s Tiago Ilori, Benfica’s Andre Gomes and FC Porto’s Ricardo Pereira also made the squad.

Edgar Borges’ U20 squad finished fourth in the recent Toulon Tournament after losing to France in the third place match. Along with Bruma, Borges added right-back João Cancelo, goalkeeper Bruno Varela, and forward Gonçalo Paciência, who is the son of current PAOK manager Domingos Paciência.

Notables left off the squad include Betinho, Ivan Cavaleiro, Piqueti, André Pereira and Frederico Venâncio, who were all at the Toulon tournament.

Portugal are drawn in Group B, alongside Cuba, South Korea and Nigeria. The squad faces Nigeria in their first match on June 21st.

A defensively-minded squad lead by veteran manager Ilídio Vale surprised everyone by making it to the final of the previous World Cup two years ago, losing to Brazil. Portugal heads into the tournament this year with a squad full of promising players.

When asked about his squad’s chances of winning their third U20 championship, manager Edgar Borges was quick to dismiss any high expectations. “Everyone always hopes for the best. Who does not dream should not be part of a project like this, but we know that it will be very difficult,” Borges told media at the news conference.

“We are very proud to have on our shoulders the expectation to win and we will do everything we can to do so. I cannot promise a title, but we will do whatever it takes to get there.”

FULL SQUAD

Goalkeepers: Bruno Varela (Benfica), José Sá (Marítimo) e Rafael Veloso (Belenenses);

Defenders: Edgar Ié (FC Barcelona), Kiko (Vitória FC de Setúbal), João Cancelo (Benfica), Mica (Sporting), Tiago Ilori (Sporting), Tiago Ferreira (FC Porto) e Tomás Dabó (Sporting de Braga);

Midfielders: André Gomes (Benfica), Tó-Zé (FC Porto), João Mário (Sporting), Agostinho Cá (FC Barcelona), Alves (Belenenses) e Tiago Silva (Belenenses);

Forwards: Aladje (FC Aprilia), Bruma (Sporting), Gonçalo Paciência (FC Porto), Ricardo Pereira (FC Porto) e Ricardo Esgaio (Sporting).

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PORTUGAL U-20: André Gomes, Tiago Ilori, Ricardo Pereira Named To The Portugal Squad for The Toulon Tournament

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SCOUTING REPORT: Sporting Lisbon’s Central Defender Tiago Ilori

Cedric-Soares-700x455

Sporting Lisbon’s promising right-back Cédric Soares could move to a Premier League or Bundesliga club this summer. According to various sources, the 21-year-old is being monitored by several clubs in both leagues who have been impressed with his performances this season.

Reports in Germany suggest that Borussia Dortmund, Hannover, Dusseldorf and Borussia Monchengladbach are interested in him. Cédric expressed his delight at the possibility of playing in the Bundesliga in an interview with football website Goal.com in March 2013.

“Four Bundesliga clubs expressed their interest in a transfer last summer. Of course, it would be awesome if it works out [this year].”

“Now it’s time for the next step. The Bundesliga is at the same level as the Premier League, and I can keep up,” he added

“I must still improve in the offensive game. I need to push the ball forward more,” he continued. “At the moment, Sporting are not very good financially, [and] I hope that the move finally happens this summer.”

The interview caused some controversy in Portugal, forcing him to downplay the comments. But Sporting’s financial situation is well-known and the sense is that Miguel Lopes’ arrival will allow the club to cash in on him.

Cédric has also been linked to Norwich and Everton. It is believed that Everton manager David Moyes sees him as an eventual replacement for the ageing Tony Hibbert.

Cédric was born in Gelsenkirchen, in the Ruhr region of Germany, but has represented Portugal at every junior level from U17 to U21. He joined Sporting Lisbon’s prestigious academy when he was only 7 years old.

In 2011, Cédric was a major part of Portugal’s run to the finals at the U20 World Cup in Colombia, where Portugal lost to Brazil in extra time. The following season, he was loaned out to Académica where he excelled.

Cédric began this campaign as Sporting’s first-choice right-back. In January, Sporting’s manager Jesualdo Ferreira acquired Portugal international Miguel Lopes which temporarily relegated young Cédric to the bench. A recent injury to Lopes has meant that Cédric is back playing full-time for Sporting.

Cédric is known for his attacking instincts and skill, though the defensive side of his game has been criticized by fans and the media at times this season. Though, this is a common problem with many young offensively gifted full-backs.

In December 2012, he scored a brilliant long-range goal in a league match against Nacional. Most recently, on Monday against Sporting Braga, Cédric delivered a perfect pass down the right side to Andre Martins who crossed the ball into the box for an on-coming Ricky van Wolfswinkel for the opening goal.

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Sporting Lisbon’s Promising Midfielder André Martins

Roderick+Miranda+Italy+v+Portugal+Toulon+U21+i1-OUQYmsWbl

Benfica have terminated Roderick Miranda’s loan deal with La Liga side Deportivo La Coruña. Manager Jorge Jesus said that the 21-year-old defender with stay with Benfica for the time being and likely will see playing time with both Benfica’s ‘B’ squad and ‘A’ squad.

Miranda formed an excellent partnership with Sporting’s Nuno Reis (On Loan at Olhanense) at the 2011 U20 World Cup in Colombia. He has seen his opportunities limited at the Spanish club this year. Deportivo currently stand last in La Liga and have given up a league high 39 goals.