June 15 - June 30
FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013™
adidas Golden Ball
FIFA Fair Play award
adidas Golden Glove
adidas Golden Boot
adidas Bronze Shoe
Neymar dazzles as Brazil conquer
Brazil won a record third successive FIFA Confederations Cup by handing world and European champions Spain their biggest defeat in a competitive match for 18 years with a 3-0 victory at a magnificently-loud Maracana.
Without doubt, the star of the show was Neymar, who produced a moment of magic in each of A Seleção’s five matches to help inspire his side to glory. The 21-year-old, who signed for Barcelona in the weeks before the tournament, followed in the footsteps of Adriano (2005) and Kaka (2009) by winning the adidas Golden Ball. He scored a wonderful goal in the Final, using his weaker left foot to fire home from a tight angle.
Earlier on the final day, extra time and penalties were needed to separate Uruguay and Italy in the match for third place in a game memorable for two fine free-kicks from Alessandro Diamanti and Edinson Cavani. It was the Italians’ second 120 minutes in 69 hours, but they battled through before eventually holding their nerve to win only their second penalty shoot-out out of seven in FIFA competitions, with Gianluigi Buffon saving three from Diego Forlan, Martin Caceres and Walter Gargano.
The Brazilian and Italian fans headed home happy on the final day, which served to whet the appetite for next year’s FIFA World Cup™. It wasn’t just a festival of champions, but a festival of football.
Brazilians get behind Tahiti, wow with anthem
This FIFA Confederations Cup began with a colourful opening ceremony which highlighted Brazil as a country where cultures have come together over the years. Tahiti in particular were given a warm welcome, the underdogs from Oceania being warmly cheered whenever they had an attempt at goal. When they found the back of the net in their opening group game against Nigeria, the roof almost came off the Estadio Mineirao in Belo Horizonte. Marama Vahirua swung in a corner from the left hand side, Jonathan Tehau pulled away from his marker Efe Ambrose, climbed highest at the far post, and planted a header beyond Vincent Enyeama into the net before the squad came together to perform a paddling celebration. It was one of the best moments of the group stage, in which the watching world was treated to some wonderful goals.
Neymar had set the tone just three minutes into the tournament when he hit a fantastic right-footed shot on the half-volley, which flew past Japan goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima and into the top corner of the net. Andrea Pirlo marked his 100th cap with a spectacular free-kick against Mexico, which was emulated by Neymar in the final group-stage game between the two sides. Uruguay’s Forlan also marked his century with a stunning strike as the passionate Brazilian crowds watched on in admiration. It wasn't just the goals which had the home fans open-mouthed, with their rendition of the country's national anthem in Fortaleza particularly unforgettable. The 50,791 fans sang it a cappella, with former FIFA World Cup Final referee Howard Webb describing it as the most incredible thing he has heard at a football stadium.
Although Brazil 2013 was played amid the backdrop of widespread social protests, the action in the stadiums served to connect people through football and this FIFA Confederations Cup gave them plenty of talking points, most notably for the amount of goals scored. There was a quite wonderful match between Italy and Japan which ebbed and flowed before ending 4-3 to the Europeans. There was also Spain's 10-0 win over Tahiti (a tournament record, in which adidas Golden Shoe winner Fernando Torres scored four) and Brazil’s incredible 4-2 win over Italy, which gave them further momentum on the road to glory.
FIFA World Cup winners in final four
In a competition dubbed the ‘Festival of Champions’, it was fitting that the four semi-finalists were all previous winners of the FIFA World Cup. The results of the group stage gave us an all-South American affair and a European classic. Brazil took on old rivals Uruguay and Spain met Italy, a repeat of the UEFA EURO 2012 final. Brazil have not been defeated by Uruguay on home soil for over 20 years and that record continued as goals from Fred and Paulinho sent them through to the final. La Roja and Gli Azzurri played out 120 minutes of fascinating football, and a sudden-death penalty shootout was required to separate the sides. In the end, 12 consecutive penalties were converted, a FIFA tournament record. However penalty number 13 proved to be unlucky for Italy as Leonardo Bonucci blazed the ball over the bar, giving Jesus Navas a chance to book his side’s place at the Maracana, which he duly did.
And so the tournament came to a climax on a day which Brazil will never forget. Before the games, the omens looked good, with the South Americans unbeaten in Rio de Janeiro for over 60 years. However, that defeat came in a FIFA final: the 1950 FIFA World Cup final against Uruguay. The nation need not have worried. Luiz Felipe Scolari masterminded a victory over La Roja which bodes well for next year. He is building a side with flair, character and an eye for goal. However, no winners of the FIFA Confederations Cup have gone on to win the FIFA World Cup the following year. Will that run finally come to an end at Brazil 2014?
Brazil, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Spain, Tahiti, Uruguay
Host cities and stadiums
Rio De Janeiro (Estadio do Maracana), Brasilia (Estadio Nacional), Fortaleza (Estadio Castelao), Belo Horizonte (Estadio Mineirao), Salvador (Arena Fonte Nova), Recife (Arena Pernambuco)
68 (average 4.25 per match)
Fernando Torres (ESP) and Fred (BRA) – both 5.
adidas Golden Ball: Neymar (BRA) adidas Golden Shoe: Fernando Torres (ESP) adidas Golden Glove: Julio Cesar (BRA) _based on assists and minutes played_
• Teams: 8 • When: 15 June 2013 – 30 June 2013 • Final: 30 June 2013 • Matches: 16 • Goals Scored: 68 (average 4.25 per match) • Attendance: 804,659 (average 50,291)
FIFA Confederations Cup Brazil 2013™
Asian finals unearth new gems
24 Jan 2011
The AFC Asian Cup has long been a platform for new talents to flourish and the continental finals at Qatar 2011 has proved to be no exception. With the Asian showpiece approaching the semi-final phase, a host of starlets have announced their arrival on the international scene having excelled so far with their respective teams. Some of these new sensations will be looking to shine in the upcoming semi-finals, while others have laid down a marker for the future despite their teams’ elimination. FIFA.com takes a look at Asia’s latest crop of new talent. Yoon Bit-Garam *Midfielder, Gyeongnam FC and Korea Republic *Cho Kwang-Rae could lay claim to being the happiest coach at Qatar 2011 with a new-look team full of young talent winning through to the last four. With both Koo Ja-Cheol and Ji Dong-Won already living up to their billing as the tournament's players to watch in the group phase, their quarter-final meeting against nemesis Iran uncovered another fresh gem with 20-year-old Yoon Bit-Garam scoring the only goal. In only his third game at Doha - all as a substitute – the Gyeongnam FC hopeful, who was voted the K-League Rookie of the Year last season, stole the show firing the match-winner in extra time. Already heralded as one of Korea Republic’s best youth talents, the midfielder is expected to further prove himself against Japan. Matt McKay *Midfielder, Brisbane Roar and Australia *After shining for Australia at the 2003 FIFA U-20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates, it has taken metronomic midfielder Matt McKay an extended period of time to make the jump to full international level. Now some eight years on in the same part of the world, the Brisbane Roar captain has proven himself at the highest level with a series of typically inspirational displays appearing in all four matches to date. In a squad full of European-based players McKay has been a standard-bearer for the A-League as the Socceroos have won their way through to the semi-finals for the first time. Be it displaying his high-tempo passing game in the middle of the park or filling in at the troublesome left fullback role, McKay seems set to be a key player on the road to Brazil 2014. Odil Ahmedov *Midfielder, Pakhtakor and Uzbekistan *Uzbekistan may be marginal underdogs going into the semi-final clash with Australia but with their midfield stalwart Odil Ahmedov in top form they are more than capable of producing the unexpected. Having established his starting place with both club and country, the 23-year-old Pakhtakor man has proved one of the tournament’s sensations, opening his account in their opening 2-0 victory against hosts Qatar with a sensational long-range goal, before again being on target in their 2-2 draw with China. Renowned for his powerful thunderbolt strike, Ahmedov plays a pivotal role in bossing the central of the park alongside former AFC Asian Player of the Year Server Djeparov. Karim Ansari Fard *Forward, Saipa and Iran *Even before the commencement of the Asian Cup, Iran coach Afshin Ghotbi singled out Ansari Fard as one of his favourites when asked to name a few of their young prospects by FIFA.com. He was soon proved correct as the 20-year-old striker netted the only goal against Korea DPR in their second group game that sealed their progression to last eight. Despite their defeat to Korea Republic in the quarter-final clash, the Iran No10 has undoubtedly caught the eye of some of Europe’s top clubs through his brilliant performance during their campaign. Yusef Ahmed *Forward, Al Sadd and Qatar *The Qatari fans may be left still lamenting their narrow last-gasp loss at the hands of Japan which cost them a place in the last four. However, the host nation didn’t finish completely empty-handed with 22-year-old forward Yusef Ahmed proving to be a revelation. After watching his side lose to Uzbekistan 2-0 in the opener, the diminutive forward, a surprise inclusion in Bruno Metsu’s Asian Cup squad, made his name in their second game against China with two of the tournament’s finest strikes. He continued to pose a constant threat against Kuwait and Japan and despite their exit, the Al Sadd marksmen is already being hailed among the country’s best after his continental exploits. Shinji Kagawa *Forward, Borussia Dortmund and Japan *Former Japan coach Takeshi Okada may have been left regretting the omission of Shinji Kagawa for his 2010 FIFA World Cup South Africa™ squad after the 21-year-old’s player of the match performance in their 3-2 quarter-final triumph over Qatar. His recent rapid rise to prominence came after scoring the winner against Paraguay in a friendly last September, and most notably, a stunning debut Bundesliga return of eight goals in just 17 appearances with Borussia Dortmund. The 2011 AFC Asian Cup is his first major tournament for the Blue Samurai with the nimble attacker proving the pre-tournament hype was not without basis.
FIFA Confederations Cup - Fans
1 Sept 2013
Gianluigi Buffon (Italy)
5 Jul 2013
Tahiti's key experience
5 Jul 2013
Fans at the Brazil 2013 Final
3 Jul 2013
Brazil celebrate winning the FIFA Confederations Cup 2013
1 Jul 2013