Portugal came from the dead to claim the third place in the FIFA Confederations Cup Russia 2017 campaign in a bad tempered match further marred by two red cards and the banning of the Mexican coach.
The Cristiano Ronaldo-less team overcame Mexico 2-1 in extra-time at the Spatak Stadium in Moscow, after they had fallen behind via an own goal in the 55th minute by defender Luis Neto.
But thanks to last minute effort by Pepe, they were able to stretch the match into extra-time and give the 42,659 fans, something worthwhile.
Mexico’s goalie, Guillermo Ochoa came to their rescue early in the match when he saved Andre Silva’s penalty kick. And moments after, an unmarked Nani headed a crossed ball so wide off the mark.
Mexico opened the scoring in the 54th minute when Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez dribbled inside the penalty area to the goalline before chopping a cross in front of goal, and Portugal defender Luis Neto inadvertently deflected the ball into his own net, while under pressure from Carlos Vela.
However, Portugal fought back and Pepe stabbed home a dramatic equaliser with the sole of his boot from Ricardo Quaresma’s cross in stoppage time to send the match to extra time.
Portugal got another chance at the penalty spot after Miguel Layun handled Gelson Martins’s attempted flick in the penalty area, and this time Adrien Silva made no mistake, as he sent Ochoa the wrong way to score the winning goal.
*With report by Fifa.com