FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013™
October 17 - November 08

FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013™

FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013™

Final Tournament Standing

About

Golden Eaglets soar to fourth crown

The FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 proved to be a joyous celebration of football, featuring exciting matches and stunning results. In the end, it was the young Nigerians who claimed the trophy by overcoming Mexico in the final.

In so doing, the Africans became the only country to win the tournament four times, surpassing the achievements of Brazil, crowned champions on three occasions. The Golden Eaglets showed once again that, in this age category, they are a global force.

Nigeria put in remarkable performances from start to finish, remaining unbeaten throughout the event, which culminated in their 3-0 triumph over the Mexicans in front of a raucous crowd at Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.

Sweden also raised eyebrows, defeating Argentina 4-1 in the match for third place, in what was their first-ever appearance in the competition. Intriguingly, the three teams that qualified from Group F finished first, second and third.

Prodigious performances and stunning surprises Prior to the start of UAE 2013, Brazil and Nigeria found themselves among the favourites, mainly due to their three previous successes at junior level. Mexico were hoping to defend their 2011 title, and thus become the first team to win back-to-back tournaments since Brazil in 1999.

The South Americans and Africans advanced in impressive fashion from Groups A and F respectively, enthralling the watching fans with several spectacular goals.

Elsewhere, Japan dominated Group D by winning all three of their matches, but they suffered a surprise reverse to Sweden in the Round of 16. European champions Russia also fell by the wayside at the same stage, while AFC U-16 Championship winners Uzbekistan were ousted by an opportunistic Honduras side.

Looking back on the tournament, Rafael Salguero, Chairman of the Organising Committee for the U-17 World Cup, said: “We saw some high-quality matches. The teams were well prepared from a physical and technical point of view. This competition serves as a springboard for talented young players; it helps them to make progress, both on and off the pitch.”

Future stars brimming with ambition UAE 2013 created history by supplying the most goals at a U-17 World Cup since the contest was launched in 1985. There were 172 scored in total, an average of 3.44 per match, outdoing the previous benchmark set at Korea 2007 (which was also won by Nigeria).

Consequently, there were numerous pretenders to the adidas Golden Boot, which was awarded to Sweden’s Valmir Berisha, whose seven goals were enough to finish just ahead of Nigeria’s Kelechi Iheanacho and Brazil’s Boschilia in the standings.

Iheanacho will have consoled himself with the capture of the adidas Golden Ball, an accolade he richly deserved after scoring six goals and setting up seven more. Brazilian midfielder Nathan came second in the voting, due largely to his exploits during the group phase, while Mexican forward Ivan Ochoa finished third.

Speaking to FIFA.com, Iheanacho reflected on the prestigious award: “I feel good, I feel good, I feel good! I don’t know if I can find the words to say what I’m actually feeling. I can’t even tell what I’m feeling because I’m feeling a millions things at the same time. I’m feeling love for my teammates and my family and my country. I’m on a high from winning the World Cup and the Golden Ball.”

An unforgettable event Inhabitants of the United Arab Emirates are not likely to forget this year’s FIFA U-17 World Cup anytime soon, especially the Nigerian supporters, who accompanied their heroes to Al Ain, Dubai and the capital Abu Dhabi, scene of their ultimate victory. Their chants after each Nigerian goal reverberated around the Emirati arenas, creating a fabulous atmosphere.

Honduras’ players are also likely to remember the event, as it proved quite historic for Los Catrachos. Following their first-ever victory at the U-17 World Cup, against the host nation in the opening match, the Central Americans went on to finish second in Group A and reach the quarter-finals.

Disappointments and revelations The biggest letdown surrounded the performances of the UAE, who lost all three of their encounters and exited the competition with little more than a whimper. Croatia, meanwhile, were expected to qualify from Group C, but ended up on the first plane home instead, pipped by Russia to the final spot allocated to third-placed teams.

Slovakia, on the other hand, will be delighted by their showing, as they reached the Round of 16 at the first time of asking. They were eventually knocked out by the Uruguayans, who subsequently fell to Nigeria in the following round.

The elimination of highly-fancied Brazil at the quarter-final stage represented one of the biggest surprises of the competition. As for Argentina, their adventure came to a halt in the semi-finals. Sebastian Driussi and Co then suffered a resounding loss to Sweden in the third place play-off.

Titanic trio For the first time in the history of the U-17 World Cup, three teams from the same section – Nigeria, Mexico and Sweden (Group F) – managed to reach the semi-finals. Argentina, unbeaten up to that point, completed the last-four line-up, but lost 3-0 to Mexico. In the other semi-final, Nigeria saw off Sweden by the same scoreline.

The final, watched by 20,000 fans in Abu Dhabi, provided an opportunity for the Golden Eaglets to confirm their superiority in this age category, one they grasped firmly by beating Mexico 3-0, having already demolished the same opponent 6-1 during the group phase.

Nigeria's coach, the colourful and freedom-loving Manu Garba, was confident of victory, as he explained to FIFA.com prior to his charges taking to the pitch: “No defence can stop us. We know that the U-17 World Cup is a unique kind of competition, but our attack is fantastic. When our offensive players are on form, they can break down any defence.”

Garba’s words proved prophetic, and his players triumphantly carried him around the Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium pitch on their shoulders as they joyously celebrated another memorable U-17 World Cup success.

Participating nations Argentina, United Arab Emirates, Brazil, Sweden, Iraq, Morocco, Mexico, Austria, Japan, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Iran, Italy, Panama, Tunisia, Russia, Slovakia, Venezuela, Croatia, Canada, Côte d'Ivoire, Nigeria, New Zealand, Honduras.

Ranking

  1. Nigeria

  2. Mexico

  3. Sweden

  4. Argentina

Host cities and stadiums Al Ain (Khalifa Bin Zayed Stadium), Fujairah (Fujairah Stadium), Ras Al Khaimah (Emirates Stadium), Sharjah (Sharjah Stadium), Abu Dhabi (Mohammed Bin Zayed Stadium), Dubai (Sheikh Rashid Stadium)

No. of goals 172 (an average of 3.44 per game)

**Number of spectators318,108

Top scorers 7 – Valmir Berisha (SWE) 6 – Kelechi Iheanacho (NGA) 6 – Boschilia (BRA)

Awards adidas Golden Ball: Kelechi Iheanacho (NGA) adidas Golden Shoe: Valmir Berisha (SWE) adidas Golden Glove: Dele Alampasu (NGA)

MATCHES

Tournament News

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08:  Nigerian players celebrate victory after beating Mexico 3-0 during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at the Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: Zaharaddeen Bello of Nigeria celebrates with the trophy after Nigeria win 3-0 during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at the Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08:  Nigerian players celebrate victory after beating Mexico 3-0 during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at the Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: Players of Nigeria celebrate with the fans after the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08:  Kelechi Iheanacho of Nigeria recieves the Golden Ball and the Silver Boot from FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at the Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08:  Dele Alampasu of Nigeria recieves the Golden Glove awards from  FIFA President Joseph S. Blatter during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at the Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08:  Valmir Berisha of Sweden lifts his Golden Boot after the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: Musa Muhammed of Nigeria lifts his team's FIFA Fairplay trophy after the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: Musa Yahaya of Nigeria celebrates his team's first goal during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08:  Musa Yahaya (back) of Nigeria celebrates his team's first goal with team mates Taiwo Awoniyi (L) and Samuel Okon during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: The World Cup trophy is seen prior to the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08:  Musa Yahaya of Nigeria tries to score a goal during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at the Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
SHARJAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 28:  General view of the Japan dressing room prior to the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Round of 16 match between Japan and Sweden at Sharjah Stadium on October 28, 2013 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
AL AIN, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 22:  Inside the dressing room of the Mexican team prior to the start of the FIFA U17 group F match between Mexico and Iraq at Khalifa Bin Zayed Stadium on October 22, 2013 in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Stuart Franklin - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 17:  The teams walk out of the tunnel during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 group A match between Brazil and Slovakia at the Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on October 17, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Richard Heathcote - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
AL AIN, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 25:  Inside the dressing room of Mexico prior to the start the FIFA U 17 World Cup group F match between Sweden and Mexico at Khalifa Bin Zayed Stadium on October 25, 2013 in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Stuart Franklin - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
SHARJAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 28: Brayan Velasquez (R) of Honduras is challenged by Akramjon Komilov of Uzbekistan during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Round of 16 match between Honduras and Uzbekistan at Sharjah Stadium on October 28, 2013 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
SHARJAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 28:  Brayan Velasquez (L) of Honduras is challenged by Akramjon Komilov of Uzbekistan during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Round of 16 match between Honduras and Uzbekistan at Sharjah Stadium on October 28, 2013 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
SHARJAH, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - OCTOBER 28: Akramjon Komilov of Uzbekistan is sent off by referee Pavel Kralovec during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Round of 16 match between Honduras and Uzbekistan at Sharjah Stadium on October 28, 2013 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

Tournament News

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<label>:</label>ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: (L-R) Kelechi Iheanacho, Chigozi Obasi, Raymond Japhet and Abdullahi Alfa of Nigeria celebrate their victory after the FIFA World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)
 
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FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013

Best of the U-17 World Cup UAE 2013

2 Oct 2015

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: Alejandro Diaz (L) of Mexico is challenged by Abdullahi Alfa of Nigeria during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013

Rising Mexican star gets family support

23 Dec 2014

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 01:  Goalkeeper Raul Gudino of Mexico saves a penalty of Mosquito of Brazil during the penalty shootout during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Quarter Final match between Brazil and Mexico at Al Rashid Stadium on November 1, 2013 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013

WOW! BRAZIL - MEXICO: The best penalty shootout ever?

25 Jun 2014

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: Alejandro Diaz (L) of Mexico is challenged by Abdullahi Alfa of Nigeria during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 Final between Nigeria and Mexico at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013

Magnificent Nigerians thump Mexico for title

21 May 2014

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 08: Valmir Berisha of Sweden is challenged by Emanuel Mammana of Argentina during the FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013 3rd place playoff match between Sweden and Argentina at Mohamed Bin Zayed Stadium on November 8, 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Alex Grimm - FIFA/FIFA via Getty Images)

FIFA U-17 World Cup UAE 2013

Argentina no match for Sweden, Berisha

21 May 2014