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Dec 6, 2013

Bento: It's a hard challenge for Portugal

COSTA DO SAUIPE, BRAZIL: Portugal coach Paulo Bento said his side faced a hard challenge after the World Cup draw put them in Group G alongside Germany, the USA and Ghana.

Portugal boss Paulo Bento struggled tactically as his side were held at home
'It is what it is,' Bento said of the draw.

Lomas: What we've learned

"It is what it is,” he said. “It's a tough group, with four good teams that have reasons to believe they all can make it to the next round. Most people probably think Germany are the best team. It's obvious they could win the whole thing.

"Our first aim is to get to the knockout stage, and then we'll take it from there."

Asked whether Portugal would need to adapt their style of play to each rival, Bento said: "We always try to keep our identity regardless of the rival, even if we make specific adjustments here and there.

“Now that we know our group, we can work on them. We already know Germany well, now we need to do our homework with Ghana and the USA, teams we're not that familiar with.”

He warned that Germany “are always competitive, even in hot weather” and added: “I can't forget that we lost our first match of the 2002 World Cup against the USA. It was a shock to us, that 3-2.

“And Ghana will try to prove they can repeat what they did in the last World Cup".

Portugal have not yet decided where they will be based, and Bento said: "We wanted to wait until the draw was done. Now that we know that we have three pretty hot matches [in Salvador, Manaus and Brasilia], we can decide where we'll stay".

The former Portugal international said he hoped the public in Brazil -- a country with a strong Portuguese inheritance -- would give support to his team, adding: "We hope that Brazil embrace us. We fought hard to be here not only because of the competition, but also because it will be held here, where much of our culture is still present today.”

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