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FIFA U-17 World Cup: Attacking football on cards as Mali, Spain clash in semi-final

Spain unleashed the full force of their 'tiki-taka' brand of football against Iran in the quarterfinals, running away with a 3-1 win.

Edited by: India TV Sports Desk, New Delhi [ Published on: October 24, 2017 20:27 IST ]
Image Source : FIFA Abel Ruiz of Spain celebrates scoring the goal during the FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017

Football fans will witness an exciting clash of two attack oriented teams when Spain and Mali clash in the semi-finals of the FIFA U-17 World Cup here on Wednesday. Spain unleashed the full force of their 'tiki-taka' brand of football against Iran in the quarterfinals, running away with a 3-1 win.  The European U-17 champions have several impressive players who have the potential to become stars of the future.

Ferran Torres has been impressive down the right wing, outfoxing rival defenders repeatedly with his intelligent runs and accurate balls into the box.

Centre-forward Abel Ruiz has displayed good finishing skills, scoring four times in five matches.

Both Torres and Ruiz were in excellent form in the quarter-finals and their combination created all sorts of problems for the Iran defenders.

Much like their senior team, the Spanish youngsters have an exciting possession-based game. They had started their campaign with a narrow loss to Brazil in Group D, but have steadily improved since then.

They were impressive in the second round, where they beat France playing attractive football. 

Mali, however, will not be easy opponents. Mali have won the CAF U-17 Africa Cup of Nations twice in a row - the first team to do so in the history of the tournament. 

The Spain defence will have to be alert against Mali as the Africans have more than enough pace and power to catch them off-guard on the counter.

Mali like to play a fast-paced attacking game and have been prolific in this tournament, scoring 15 goals in five matches, conceding six times.

Their promising striker Mali Lassana N'Diaye is the third highest scorer, finding the net five times in five matches. His fellow forward Djemoussa Traore is also in good form with three goals to his name.

Mali also have the ability to score from outside the rival penalty box and the Spain defenders as well as their goalkeeper Alvaro Fernandez will have to be on their toes.

(With IANS Inputs)

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