DUBAI – Defending champions Flamengo are through to the semi-final of the 9th Dubai International Football Championship U16 following a 3-0 win over Al Nasr on a rainy evening at the Maktoum Bin Rashid Stadium in Al Mamzar.
The Brazilians, who blanked Atletico 4-0 in their opening match, scored all three of their goals inside the first 34 minutes of the game on Saturday, with Joao Pedro Da Cruz giving them an early 6th minute lead. Pedro Henrique Fonseca Martins then made it 2-0 in the 22nd minute and 12 minutes later, Kaky Brum Veloso added a third to Flamengo’s tally.
In the second match of the day, Atletico bounced back from their loss against Flamengo to drub Hatta Club 7-0, with Marcio Vidal, Jose Maria and Lucas Serrano scoring two goals apiece, and Samuel Hernandez one.
Atletico will now face Nasr in their final match of Group B on Monday with a draw being enough to take them through to the last four. An Al Nasr win will, however, see the Spaniards return home early and the Dubai club, who drew 2-2 with Hatta in their opening match, will be playing for a place in the final instead.
“We still have everything to play for,” said Faisal Mohammed, the Al Nasr head coach. “We still have a chance of reaching the semis and we know what we need to do to get there. Our target is very clear: to go for three points against Atletico and we will do our best. We know we will be up against a quality opponent, but we will keep fighting until the final whistle.”
Shabab Al Ahli also have a chance of reaching the last four, despite their 4-0 loss to Al Hilal, who have confirmed their spot in the semis from Group A. The Dubai club, who have three points, need a draw against Borussia Dortmund to make the grade. The Germans, who have one point, need a win to progress.