Brazil’s Duda sizing upher options

The FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Papua New

Guinea 2016 seems to be providing Brazil forward

Duda with some answers to the questions she has

been asking herself of late. Blessed with talent to

burn, she has been pondering the options her

skills have opened up to her, and which involve

choosing a career in futsal or football and playing

on the wing or down the middle.

“I think I love football just as much as futsal,” the

Canarinha No9, who scored her side’s opening

goal at Papua New Guinea 2016, told FIFA.com .

“Playing both games gives you an advantage or

two, and I find it natural to use skills that you often

see in futsal, like keeping your foot close to the

ball, dribbling past opposing players and making

bursts down the flanks.”

Born in Major Isidoro, in the state of Alagoas, Duda

was Brazil’s leading scorer with seven goals at the

South American U-20 Women’s Futsal

Championship held in Paraguay four months ago.

She is also enjoying her time with the national

football team at Papua New Guinea 2016, where

they kicked off with a 9-0 defeat of the hosts. A

4-2 defeat to Korea DPR in their second game

promptly brought them back down to earth,

however.

Overcoming adversity

That reverse left the Brazilians to fight it out with

Sweden for a quarter-final place, a make-or-break

game in which they fell behind to an early Stina

Blackstenius goal. “It was a really tough match

against a side that played well,” said Duda, looking

back on the 1-1 draw that took Brazil through at

the European side’s expense. “We managed to

overcome all the problems they posed to us at the

start, though, and come away with a valuable draw

that took us into the next round.”

Waiting for the Brazilians in the last eight are

Japan, who eased past Canada in their final game

in Group A to top the section from Spain, who

relinquished first place after losing to Nigeria.

“We knew we were going to come up against a

tough side,” said Duda, looking ahead to Brazil’s

meeting with the Japanese at Port Moresby’s

National Football Stadium on Thursday. “We’ve

seen for ourselves what a good team they are and

how hard they are to play against. We’ve got to do

our own preparations, though, no matter what their

strengths are. We need to be focused on the job

right from the start, play our game and not make

mistakes. We’re hoping we can come away with

the win.”

With her performances in Papua New Guinea, Duda

seems to be finding some answers to the

questions she has been asking herself about her

future, with A Canarinha’s run to the last eight

giving her the time to showcase her talent. The

question now is, can she shed more light on her

future path when she runs out against Japan?​

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