Portugal expecting stern test against Morocco, says Andre Silva

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Moscow, June 18 (IANS) Portugal striker Andre Silva said the European champions are preparing for a tough assignment against Morocco when they meet in Group B of the World Cup here on Wednesday.

Portugal kicked off their campaign in Russia with a 3-3 draw against Spain while Morocco conceded a late own goal in a 0-1 loss to Iran, reports Efe.

“I think we are stronger than Morocco if we compare the two teams, but I’m not saying the game will be easy for us,” Silva told a news conference on Monday at Portugal’s base in Kratovo, 40km southwest of Moscow.

“We cannot underestimate them and must have respect for any opponent. Any game at the World Cup is difficult,” he added

“They lost their first game but it happens and now they will focus on winning and will try their best. They’re used to playing against European teams and will do their all to get this victory. There are no favourites. Morocco have excellent players and the result of their game against Iran could have been different,” he continued.

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Silva, who was introduced as a late substitute against Spain in Sochi, said he was unsure if he will again be used off the bench on Tuesday.

The 22-year-old AC Milan forward formed a lethal attacking partnership with Cristiano Ronaldo during qualifying, as the pair scored 24 goals between them.

“As I’ve said it’s a big honour to play with him [Ronaldo], he’s the best footballer in the world,” Silva said.

“I’m very happy to be on the same team with him. When he needs me to do something I’m always where he needs me to be. And when I need him he’s always by my side. We always try to work together and in combination,” he said.

–IANS

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