Three reasons why Portugal can win gold

  • Their attack, defence and mindset

  • We take a close look at each, ahead of Wednesday’s final

  • Kick-off at 18:00 (local time) at the Main Futsal Hall

Portugal will take on Japan in Wednesday’s final of the Women’s Youth Olympic Futsal Tournament Buenos Aires 2018, with the Main Futsal Hall providing the setting. picks out three good reasons why the Portuguese could well make the gold theirs.

A fearsome attack

Portugal have amassed 53 goals in five matches, an average of 10.6 per game, above the tournament average of 9.55. The prolific Fifo has scored 17 alone, only two fewer than the entire Japan team. The Portuguese are hard to defend against, with their players racking up 40 assists to date, which means that 75 per cent of their goals have been set up by passes.

A watertight defence

Portugal have let in just three goals to date, and at one stage of the competition, went 124 minutes without conceding at all. One of the three matches in which they have stopped the opposition from scoring was the group encounter with Japan, a match in which top spot was at stake. The Portuguese know how the Japanese attack works and how to stop it.

A winning mentality

The Europeans went into the competition as one of the favourites for gold and have backed up that status with their performances. While they have yet to come under much pressure, on the rare occasions that they have been tested, they have always come up with a response. They proved that point against Cameroon, Japan and in the semi-finals against Bolivia, who held their own for the opening ten minutes.