PORTO : Portugal’s Bruno Fernandes scored a scientific double as they beat cussed guests North Macedonia 2-0 to qualify for the World Cup finals in Qatar after a tense European playoff tie on Tuesday.
Roared on by 50,000 followers at a sold-out Dragao Stadium in Porto, Portugal dominated the sport from the beginning however struggled to interrupt down the robust North Macedonian defence, managing solely three pictures on track regardless of having nearly 70per cent possession.
Fernandes opened the scoring half-hour into the primary half after intercepting a move by his finest buddy, North Macedonia captain Stefan Ristovski, working an excellent one-two with Cristiano Ronaldo earlier than whipping his shot previous the goalkeeper.
The 27-year-old attacking midfielder sealed Portugal’s win within the sixty fifth minute, putting residence a volley from a Diogo Jota cross.
Fernando Santos’s staff then ran down the clock, celebrating on the remaining whistle with their joyful followers who remained within the stands for greater than quarter-hour after the sport, singing because the gamers accomplished a victory lap holding an enormous Portugal flag.
“I don’t care about individual accomplishments but this display will be one to remember because it helped my country to reach a World Cup,” Fernandes instructed reporters.
Portugal, who gained the 2016 European Championship in France and the 2019 UEFA Nations League at residence, certified for a sixth straight World Cup finals and have not missed a significant worldwide competitors within the final 20 years.
“I have already won two competitions and I hope I can win the third one in Qatar,” coach Santos instructed a information convention.
“There was a spirit of mutual help and great support from the public. It was a deserved and fair win and qualification. I don’t remember any great goalscoring situations for their team.”
They had been pushed into the playoffs after ending second in Group A, having misplaced their remaining recreation at residence to Serbia 2-1 final November.
That had left them needing to win two consecutive elimination video games to qualify, with final week’s win over Turkey, the place they survived late drama, establishing a decider in opposition to North Macedonia, who had surprised Italy of their opening match.
It was a nervous event in Porto on Tuesday however Portugal dominated and prevented any surprises from the underdogs, who didn’t have a shot on track.
(Reporting by Fernando Kallas; Editing by Toby Davis)
Source : channelnewsasia.com
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