FIFA U-17 World Cup: Chile aim to replicate continental form on world stage
Chile could spring a surprise in the FIFA U-17 World Cup, much like the senior team did during the 2014 FIFA World Cup.Updated: Sep 23, 2017 19:39 IST
Chile finished second in the South American championships this term. Should they get out of this really difficult group, even as a best third-placed team, Chile could spring a surprise pretty much like their senior team has since 2014 when they dumped defending champions Spain out of the World Cup at the Maracana.
Having hosted the 2015 edition, Chile progressed to the pre-quarter finals where they lost 1-4 to Mexico. They played the U-17 World Cup twice before that, in 1993 and 1997.
They played two four-nation tournaments in the build-up to the World Cup and were held 1-1 by India in one. But then, they beat Belgium and Poland and drew with France to win the other.
KNOW THE COACH: Hernan Caputto
This former goalkeeper is another in the long list of Argentines who have helped Chile develop; a list that includes Marcelo Biesla, Jorge Sampaoli but like Uruguayan Nelson Acosta, Caputto, 42, is a Chile citizen and has never played in the country of his birth. He has been with the team since March 2016.
PAST PERFORMANCE: 3rd place: 1993. Round of 16: 2015. Group stage: 1997. Did not qualify: 1985-91, 95-2013.
PASSAGE TO INDIA: Qualified by finishing runners-up in South American championships
Results in South American championships: Bt Venezuela 1-0, bt Colombia 1-0, lost 0-2 to Paraguay, bt Ecuador 1-0, Lost 0-5 to Brazil.
Name: Julio Borquez
Club: Deportes Iquique
Why he is special: Yet to make a senior team appearance but deemed good enough to be in the roster of the team that finished second in the Primera Division and be in the U20 squad.
Name: Gaston Zuniga
Club: Not known
Why he is special: An aggressive defender who also has a knack of finding the target. He was booked four times in 10 games of the South American championships. He scored the matchwinners in 1-0 wins against Colombia and Ecuador.
Name: Ignacio Mesias
Club: Union San Felipe
Why he is special: He has already made two appearances, as a substitute, for the club’s senior team and has been on the bench for six games this season.
First Published: Sep 20, 2017 18:04 IST