Henrique Almeida has netted five goals in the tournament so far (Getty)

It’s Brazil v Portugal in U-20 final
Brazil are on course to win their fifth U-20 World Cup title after a Henrique Almeida double gave them a 2-0 victory over Mexico and a place in the final. It was his fifth goal of the tournament – the same number as Portugal have scored to reach Saturday’s final in Bogota. Portugal defeated France 2-0 in yesterday’s other semifinal.

It will be a repeat of the 1991 U-20 World Cup final when the Portuguese won 4-2 on penalties. For Portugal, goalkeeper Mika has set a new U-20 record of 570 minutes without conceding a goal. Meanwhile, his side aim to establish another record on Saturday – they are yet to concede in 615 mins of football and could eclipse Brazil’s 634 mins in the final. FIFA president Sepp Blatter is currently in Colombia for the closing stages of the tournament.

Maracana strike halts renovation

Workers revamping Rio’s Maracana stadium for the 2014 World Cup have gone on strike after one man was injured in an on-site explosion, Reuters reports. An oil barrel with chemical residue exploded on Wednesday badly burning worker. The incident sparked a demonstration by construction workers outside the venue for the 2014 final. They are calling for an increase in pay and better healthcare.

Last month, INSIDER visited the Maracana and witnessed the scale of the massive renovation. A spokesman for the State of Rio, which oversees the Maracana reconstruction, revealed that the projected cost of the revamp had risen from $450 million to $600 million. Brazil 2014 World Cup organizers tell INSIDER it will be finished by the end of next year and ready for the 2013 Confederations Cup.

Euro 2012 visa regime for co-hosts
Poland and Ukraine are set to simplify the visa regime between the two countries for the Euro 2012 championships, according to Interfax. Ukrainian football fans are to be allowed to use their tickets as visas to reduce border problems. The same deal is expected to be in place for Polish fans with tickets to games in Ukraine’s four host cities. UEFA is expected to announce a public transport initiative for Euro 2012 that is similar to the 2008 Austria-Switzerland edition when ticket-holders enjoyed free public transport throughout the two nations.

FIFA Club World Cup ticket sales
The first phase of ticket sales for the FIFA Club World Cup Japan kick
off on Sept. 11 exclusively on FIFA.com. The seventh edition is
scheduled to be played from Dec. 8 to 18 in Yokohama and Toyota City.

competition will feature CF Monterrey of Mexico (CONCACAF Champions
League winners), Santos FC (CONMEBOL Copa Libertadores winners),
Auckland City (OFC Champions League winners), Barcelona (UEFA Champions
League winners) as well as the winners of this year’s AFC Champions
League, the CAF Champions League winners and a club from Japan’s
J.League representing the host nation.

By INSIDER editor Mark Bisson

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