who would take their place in the Final from
the second Semi-Final? The two teams set to
do battle were Janssen Portugal and JNJ Turkey.
Portugal had previously reached two European
finals in these tournaments – both in the Plate.
They had a 100% record in Semi-Finals but this
would be their most difficult challenge yet.
It was in the Cup and it was against the defending
champions, JNJ Turkey. Janssen Portugal were
unbeaten with 4 wins and 2 draws. JNJ Turkey
had a slightly better record with 5 wins and
was Janssen Portugal who took an early lead
in this one as Bernardo Rodrigues hit goal #12
for him. It was fantastic news for Janssen Portugal
but the only problem was there was a lot of
time for their opponents to recover. It was
the first time today that JNJ Turkey had fallen
behind – how would they respond? With urgency
is the question. They deployed their subs as
emergency ball boys even though it was early.
There was a steely determination about JNJ Turkey
Turkey were on the front foot but they had not
created any clear cut chances but all of a sudden
they were level. From a corner, the goalkeeper's
view was obstructed by a defender. Serkan Kardesler's
corner was heading in at the near post and Joao
Mendes couldn't quite prevent it from crossing
the line. It was a strange way for JNJ Turkey
to draw level but 1-1 it was. Then before half-time
JNJ Turkey moved ahead with Edip Efe providing
at half-time and both teams were still very
much in this tie. JNJ Turkey were masterful
in defence though. Although JNJ Turkey could
not add to their lead at one end they were keeping
Janssen Portugal at the other. All the time
it remained at 2-1 there was the chance that
Janssen Portugal could grab the goal that would
earn them a penalty shoot-out. It was not to
be though as time ran out on Portugal as JNJ
Turkey advanced to a third successive Cup Final.
tournament was now over for Janssen Portugal
but they had enjoyed a great day. It was their
best performance to date.