France coasts to 6-2 win in all-nations cup match

THREE second-half goals pushed France to a 6-2 win over Portugal in the opening round of the Knox All-Nations Cup at the Knox Regional Football Centre on Sunday.

The French got off to a perfect start through Andrew Sava in the sixth minute but Portugal equalised one minute later with a goal from Kenny Athiu.

France then gave itself some breathing space when Josh Wood scored twice within three minutes but again Portugal came back and within four minutes scored its second goal through Pedro Seq-ueira.

France however was not deter-red, scoring three second-half goals via Kalonzo Kabongo in the 43rd minute, Alexandros Saisanos in the 61st and Andrew Blumgart in the 67th to make a great start to the tournament which opened on Saturday with reigning champions Scotland defeating Romania 1-0.

Coached by Frank McGrellis with Stan Webster overseas, Scotland started off intent on going back-to-back by taking the lead in the 17th minute through Wayne Gordon.

However it could not increase the lead despite dominating large periods of the game with no change to the score at full-time.

Somalia made its first ever appearance in the tournament and went down 2-1 to Albania. The third game of the day was a South American derby between Chile and Peru, with Chile getting on top early and going on to win 3-0.

Another derby completed the program on the first day of competition when Seychelles played Mauritius and got to half-time leading 2-0, before the final whistle had it winning 3-1 after goals from John-athan Ash (two) and Grant Lane.

On Sunday, Australia played Bosnia with the latterunderscoring its dominance with a 4-2 victory.

Italy and Cyprus then played a close affair with Italy 2-1 up at the break but Cyprus came roaring back to win 3-2.

Last year's semi-finalist Ireland ran into trouble in its game with Serbia, going down 2-1 after leading through a Mark Leech goal in the ninth minute which it maintained until half-time.

Second-half goals from Milos Lujic in the 48th and 61st minute turned the tables on Ireland and it will have to work harder to make finals.

The tournament continues next weekend with games on Saturday beginning at 11.30am at the Knox Regional Football Centre near the corner of EastLink and High Street Road Wantirna South.

—Norm Edgar

Saturday

Australia v Italy, 11.30am

Albania v Mauritius, 1pm

Somalia v Seychelles, 2.30pm

Portugal v Ireland, 4pm

Sunday

Romania v Peru, 11.30am

Scotland v Chile, 1pm

Serbia v France, 2.30pm

Bosnia v Cyprus, 4pm

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