Share this story

Portugal want to forget sorry loss to Chile and concentrate on World Cup qualifier


Portugal’s campaign in the 2017 Confederations Cup ended in a sorry loss to Chile in the semifinals.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Co. were beaten via penalty shots 0-3, moving them down to a fight for third place.

So what’s next for Fernando Santos’s side?

A Seleccao should forget that episode in Russia and concentrate next on another mission.

That will be in the World Cup 2018 qualifier where they are currently running second behind Switzerland in Group B.

Portugal, the reigning European champions, have an inside track to make it to the biggest stage in football next year.

They are just three points off the Swiss and have in their next match against lowly Faroe Islands as opponents.

Portugal are currently ranked 8th in the world, while Faroe Islands, nicknamed Landslioio, are ranked 80th.

Ronaldo and his pals are on a five-game winning streak in the qualifier and look a cinch to make it six in a row.

They opened their campaign with a 2- 0 loss at Switzerland, but after that they regrouped and notched wins over Andorra (6-0), Faeroe Islands (6-0), Latvia (4-1 and 3-0) and Hungary (3-0).

The square off with visiting Faeroe Islands on September 1 and Santo’s men look to vent their ire on the minnows.

Faroe Islands, mentored by Danish coach Lars Olsen, will head into the clash hoping to create a major upset.

They lost three of their last four matches and will try to seek intervention from football gods to down a mighty squad seeking to reach the next World Cup and improve on their round-of-16 finish during the 2014 staging in Brazil.

Upset is not discounted in sport but against Portugal, a loss appear to be in the bag for Faroe Islands who have not yet reached the finals of the World Cup or European Championship since they became members of FIFA in 1988 and UEFA in 1990.

In their last head-to-head meeting which happened in the on-going qualifier at Torsvollur last October 11, 2016, Portugal ran riot over the hosts, scoring a 6-0 rout.

Young striker Andre Silva scored a hat-trick, while Ronaldo, Joao Moutinho and Joao Cancelo drilled in a goal each in that massacre.

While Portugal showed no mercy in their visit at Faroes Island, will they show the same ferocity in front of their fans?

Judging from the way how frustration came their way in that defeat to Chile, the answer is a resounding “Yes!’’

However, if Santos decides not to field a full-strength roster, Portugal still have the firepower to get the full three points at the expense of the Faeroes.

And if he is in his element, Ronaldo, currently the top scorer in the qualifier with 11 goals as Robert Lewandowski of Poland, might inspire for another barrage of goals for the hosts.