Ronaldo puts Portugal through to Euro final

Thursday, 2016-07-07 11:47:31
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Ronaldo (left) and his teammates celebrate Portugal’s second goal. (Photo: Reuters)
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NDO – Cristiano Ronaldo scored one goal and set up the other as Portugal surged to a 2-0 semifinal victory over Wales early on July 7 to make the Euro final for the second time in history. 

Despite being among the title favourites, Portugal were not as convincing as expected in their journey to the semifinals. The Fernando Santos’s side had five matches in the tournament without a single win in over 90 official minutes of play.

However, Seleccao delivered an impressive performance against Wales this morning scoring two consecutive goals within just four minutes, with captain Ronaldo as the biggest contributor.

The Real Madrid striker broke the deadlock after a goalless first half by heading home Raphael Guerreiro’s corner at 50 minutes.

The goal, his third in the tournament, not only equalled Michel Platini’s record of nine in European Championship finals, but also left Ronaldo one short of France’s tournament top scorer Antoine Griezmann.

Three minutes after the opener, Ronaldo made a convenient pass to Nani for Portugal’s second goal, thus putting an end to Wales’s fairytale journey in this year’s Euro campaign.

Wales entered the match with forward Aaron Ramsey on the bench due to suspension, which was a huge loss to the Chris Coleman’s side.

The absence of Ramsey undoubtedly weakened Wales’s attack power, preventing them from testing the Portugal team despite Gareth Bale’s concerted efforts.

Regardless of the loss, Bale and teammates can definitely take pride in themselves for what they achieved in their Euro debut. Meanwhile, Portugal will have a chance to redeem their bitter 2004 final defeat to Greece. Seleccao’s final opponent will be either Germany or France, who will meet each other in the remaining semifinal tomorrow morning.

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