Mexico will face England, Iraq eye first win against Chileans
Kolkata: Fresh from a rousing start to their campaign, England's firepower will be tested by two-time former champions Mexico in a mouthwatering group F contest of the FIFA Under-17 World Cup on Wednesday.
Proving too hot for Chile, England asserted their supremacy in the group with a 4-0 rout and another similar outing will certainly seal their pre-quarterfinal berth.
But 'El Tri' will be no pushovers and the Mario Arteaga outfit is bidding for its first win in this edition after being held to a frustrating 1-1 draw by Iraq.
Having won two titles since the turn of the century, Mexico are one of the most consistent sides of the tournament.
England, who failed to progress beyond group stage in the last edition in Chile 2015, have not progressed beyond quarterfinals from three attempts as Cooper faces the biggest group F challenge.
Arteaga had opted for a four-man backline in Ra l Sandoval, Alan Maeda, Carlos Robles and Adri n V zquez and it remains to be seen how they cope against the menacing English attack.
Meanwhile, a buoyant Iraq will look to post a win when they take on a demoralised Chile in their second Group F match.
Iraq secured their first ever point at the U-17 World Cup with a spirited draw against heavyweights Mexico and they would look to continue the momentum against Chile, who suffered a massive 0-4 defeat against England in their opening game.
Full of pace and seemingly endless stamina, Mohammed Dawood spearheaded the Iraqi counter-attacking game plan to perfection, and found himself in front of the goal post on more than one occasion.
Dawood gave the Asian champions a surprise lead in the 16th minute, before Mexico's Roberto De La Rosa scored the equaliser in the 61st minute.
Dawood's dominance on Wednesday can prove instrumental in deciding whether Iraq would progress from Group F to the Round of 16 in their second Under-17 World Cup appearance.
However, Iraq's coach Qahtan Jathir is in no mood to look too far ahead and said their focus is solely on Chileans at the moment.
"Chile will not be easy. They have good players and are strong physically. They have good tactics as well. So, we will give our best against them," he said.
Chile would have to get their act together after a humiliating defeat in the previous game or face ouster.
It would be important for the Chileans to stop the Dawood's incisive ploys on Wednesday but their ace goalkeeper Julio Borquez will be missed as he was red-carded against England.