Portugal got the better of Argentina, while South Korea thrashed Fiji as the men’s Olympic soccer tournament began on Thursday.
Second-half goals from Portugal guided the nation to a 2-0 win over Argentina in their Olympic football tournament opener, while South Korea put in an impressive shift against a hapless Fiji.
Portugal, spurred on by the senior national team’s success at Euro 2016, found the net through Goncalo Paciencia and Pite – both assisted by Bruno Fernandes.
South Korea was in dominant form against Fiji, scoring seven second-half goals in an 8-0 rout of Frank Farina’s men.
Host Brazil was held to a 0-0 draw by a 10-man South Africa, while defending champion Mexico was pegged back twice in a 2-2 draw with Germany.
Iraq and Denmark played out a scoreless draw, Colombia fought back to secure a 2-2 draw with Sweden, and Honduras survived a nervy finish to defeat Algeria 3-2.
Meanwhile, Nigeria overcame difficult preparations for the tournament by holding on for a 5-4 win over Japan in a nine-goal thriller.
South Korea was only 1-0 up with 30 minutes to play, before three goals in 90 seconds – including two from Kwon Chang-hoon – opened the floodgates in Salvador, Bahia. The AFC representatives went on to score another four in the biggest win at the Olympics since 1980.
PLAYER OF THE DAY
Ryu Seung-woo may have scored a hat trick against Fiji, but Nigeria forward Oghenekaro Etebo went one better and scored four in the side’s win over Japan. The 20-year-old, who plays club football for Feirense in Portugal, scored two in each half in the 5-4 win.
PACIENCIA EYES GOLD
“It is really important as our generation is trying to be better. If we can win like the national team [did at the European Championship] then the name of Portugal will be at a higher level,” said Paciencia, when asked if Portugal can go in to win gold.
“I had never missed a goal like this. I am angry, even shame, but it happens. I’m disappointed in myself, I will not be able to sleep well today,” said Brazil’s Gabriel Jesus, after hitting the post with an open goal to aim at.