WORLD CUP ROUND OF 16 Ronaldo upstaged as Portugal ousted

03 July, 2018, 01:19 | Author: Ellis Copeland
  • Ronaldo-cropped

Uruguay got off to a flying start, with Edinson Cavani scoring after just seven minutes, putting pressure on Ronaldo's side nearly immediately.

"The whole team sacrificed so we could get the win", Suarez said.

Exquisite technique, timing and teamwork were all present as the two combined to score a goal inside the first 10 minutes that few sides at the tournament would have been able to prevent.

Uruguay has gone deep into the World Cup before, even with some of the same players, yet after four straight wins, it's clear there is something more to the group that Oscar Tabarez has brought to Russian Federation. But there was no late video review to benefit Portugal as Ronaldo's fourth World Cup came to an uneventful end. Right from the beginning of the match, both teams played attacking football and tried hard to gain an early advantage. On the night, Uruguay were certainly a superior version of Portugal.

They had 61 percent possession, played more than double the number of passes as Uruguay and had 20 attempts compared to six from their opponents.

It was from another sort of dead-ball delivery that Portugal found a chink in the armour, Pepe equalising with a header from a corner after the break.

Portugal coach Fernando Santos threw up his hands in disgust, realising that coming from behind a second time against this Uruguay defence was going to be a tall order.

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Ronaldo's great start in Russian Federation allowed him to surpass the combined total of three goals he had scored in his previous three World Cups and take his worldwide tally 85 from 154 matches.

The 31-year-old has scored three goals for Uruguay so far in the tournament, and former Arsenal defender Keown said no striker puts himself in better positions to score than Cavani, who has a strong partnership with Luis Suarez.

"The truth is, it was really exciting", Cavani said.

During Portugal's four matches he showed flashes of his brilliance but was often restricted to foraging on the flanks or denied a clear shot at goal when he cut inside.

Cavani hobbled off with 16 minutes left with a suspected hamstring injury but is hopeful he will be fit in time to face France on Friday in Nizhny Novgorod.

But Uruguay held on to reach the last eight, even if match-winner Cavani gave them a scare ahead of the France game by limping off in the final quarter. "You have a coach who has been working with them for 12 years, very experienced, very high-quality", he said, adding that they have yet to concede a goal in 2018. "A group that has a big ambition to triumph and that is why I am happy about everything". You'll see the teams doing their best to win.

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