Monday, 24 September, 2018

Ronaldo sets Portugal on way to Confederations Cup semis

Sergey Savostianov  TASS Sergey Savostianov TASS
Kenny Thornton | 25 June, 2017, 00:11

With that in mind, Russian Federation manager Stanislav Cherchesov may ditch the defensive 5-4-1 approach that proved ineffective versus Portugal and revert to the 4-4-2 formation that brought victory against New Zealand, where Dmitry Poloz partnered Fedor Smolov in attack.

"It has been verified that there are no grounds for any disciplinary action to be taken", read FIFA's statement on the issue.

Mexico's Carlos Salcedo and Hector Moreno will miss the game due to the injuries they suffered Wednesday in the 2-1 win over New Zealand. Things escalated from there, and Osorio ultimately apologized later for his part in the situation.

This will be the first match of Portugal and New Zealand history.

Mexico will face off with the host nation of the Federation Internationale de Football Association 2017 Confederations Cup, Russia, in Kazan on Saturday, June 24.

On the other side, Portugal takes on New Zealand with a chance to win the group still intact.

The European champions came into the game in second behind Mexico in the group but ended on top by virtue of better goals difference.

Verstappen fastest in both Azerbaijan practice rounds
Alonso stood pensively standing behind the safety gates, hands on his hips, rather than returning to the garage of the team. Meanwhile, French driver Romain Grosjean was slowest and ranted constantly about brake trouble in his Haas vehicle .

It was their first goal in 555 minutes of Confederations Cup football before Raul Jimenez and Oribe Peralta scored second-half goals for Mexico as the Kiwis faded.

Santos withdrew Ronaldo on 67 minutes with the semi-finals in mind, and his replacement Nani struck within moments of his introduction only for Stefanovic to brilliantly tip behind his deflected shot. "At Euro 2016, we won four games and the fact that it was done in extra time shows our good preparation to play long games", he said. Mexico have options but we do not have any. We are only concentrating on New Zealand.

Late in the game, a tired-looking defense failed to close down Andre Silva and then Nani who both made space to shoot and score.

Advancing from the group with European champion Portugal and Gold Cup victor Mexico was seen as a hard task from the start, but an opening victory against New Zealand had left Russian Federation in position to make it to the semifinals despite a loss to Portugal in the second match.

"Everybody has their own opinion so we just accept what people say and we try to learn from positive criticism and the others, we just accept them".

"But we gave them a great challenge and we feel we deserved more from that game".

Ronaldo buried the resultant penalty beyond Stefanovic to draw level with former Hungary great Sandor Kocsis and within nine goals of the legendary Ferenc Puskas' European record of 84 at worldwide level.

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