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FIFA World Cup 2018, Portugal vs Morocco, Highlights: As It Happened

News18.com | June 20, 2018, 8:11 PM IST
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Cristiano Ronaldo will attempt to follow up his World Cup opening game heroics for Portugal against a Morocco side licking their wounds after a crushing last-gasp defeat.
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Jun 20, 2018 7:28 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 7:26 pm (IST)

Full-time: That's the final whistle folks and Portugal have notched up their first win of the tournament. They now have four points in 2 matches and they are almost certain to qualify into the next round. While as for Morocco, they become the first team to exit the competition.

Jun 20, 2018 7:22 pm (IST)

Chance: Morocoo skipper Mehdi Benatia had a wonderful chance to equalise but once again, hit shot sailed over the bar. The ball fell kindly for the defender inside the 6-yard box but he couldn't hit the target in the 93rd minute of the match. 

Jun 20, 2018 7:20 pm (IST)

Glorious Chance: Selfishness from Ziyach may just have cost Morocco a goal here. The left-footed played found space inside the D and when he should have passed the ball to a free player in front of the goal, he opted to shoot and the ball hit Pepe and went for a corner. 5 minutes of injury-time left to be played now. 

Jun 20, 2018 7:13 pm (IST)

Free-kick: Benatia is playing with fire at the moment as he fouls Ronaldo on the line of the D and Portugal almost had a penalty kick. Referee points for a free-kick and Ronaldo is taking his famous steps just behind the ball. However, his strike hits the wall, much to the delight of the Morocco fans. 5 mins left to be played in the half.

Jun 20, 2018 7:11 pm (IST)

Chance: Bernando Silva passes the ball to Bruno Fernandes near the edge of the box and the midfielder tries from range. Fernandes shot goes way past the woodwork. Seven minutes of regulation time left to be played in the second half.

Jun 20, 2018 7:07 pm (IST)

Free-kick and Chance: Moutinho brings down Ziyach few meters away from the edge of the box. The left-footer then sent in a beautiful curling corss but the Benatia could not hit the goal with his header. Portugal lead 1-0 with 11 minutes to go. 

Jun 20, 2018 7:04 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 7:02 pm (IST)

Just as in the first half, Morocco have time and space around the box. Amrabat has his cross blocked, the ball swings around and the next effort is cleared away.  With 17 minutes to be played, let’s see if we will have an equalizer or will Portugal score their second.

Jun 20, 2018 6:59 pm (IST)

Substitution: El Kaabi comes in place of Boutaib for Morroco while Fernandes replaces Mario in the 70th minute of the match.

Jun 20, 2018 6:57 pm (IST)

Chance: Another good chance goes a begging for Morocco to equalise as Ziyach hits a free-kick from the edge of the box way over the target. Shots haven't been Morocco's problem, but it is their accuracy which has been way off today.

Jun 20, 2018 6:56 pm (IST)

Back the other way Joao Moutinho tries to curl in a free kick to the back post but William Carvalho collides with El Kajoui for a free kick. Portugal are trying their best to keep Morocco at bay but they are knocking at the door very strongly now. 65 minutes have been played and Portugal still lead 1-0.

Jun 20, 2018 6:49 pm (IST)

Chance: Morocco players have failed to hit the target more often than not and once again had a good chance to level but failed to do so. This time, the ball fell kindly for Benatia inside the D but his shot sailed over the bar in the 60th minute of match.

Jun 20, 2018 6:46 pm (IST)

Save and Save: Excellent double save Rui Partricio to keep Portugal's lead intact. First, he caught a shot from Belhanda from the edge of the box. And then one minute later, Ziyach sent a cross in from the free-kick and the shot was saved acrobatically by the keeper. 55 minutes played and Portugal still lead. 

Jun 20, 2018 6:40 pm (IST)

Chance: Quick free-kick taken by the Portuguese players are Ronaldo was felled near the half-way line. As the Moroccan players were protesting, Guedes found space inside the D and cut back the ball. Ronaldo found the ball free inside the D but his shot sailed way over the bar. 

Jun 20, 2018 6:38 pm (IST)

Three minutes have been played in the second half and it has been evens stevens to say the least. Morocco are trying hard for an equaliser but they have failed to do so. Meanwhile, as for Portugal, there defense has looked solid.

Jun 20, 2018 6:22 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 6:21 pm (IST)

Half-time: Ronaldo's goal separates the two teams at half-time, which he scored in the fourth minute of the match from a header. Ronaldo is now only behind Ali Daei of Iran, on 109 goals, in the global all-time scoring charts. Portugal 1 : Morocco 0

Jun 20, 2018 6:18 pm (IST)

Glorious Chance: Morocco had a big chance to level the match but Belhand's header from the free-kick goes past the right hand side of the keeper and also misses the post. Skipper Benatia was also lingering around but the ball missed him as well.

Jun 20, 2018 6:14 pm (IST)

Stat Attack: Cristiano Ronaldo became Europe's all-time leading international scorer with 85 goals when he headed in Portugal's opening strike against Morocco. Ronaldo scored a hat-trick in Portugal's dramatic 3-3 draw against Spain on Friday to match Hungarian great Ferenc Puskas as Europe's record top scorer with 84 goals.

Jun 20, 2018 6:11 pm (IST)

Glorious Chance: Cristiano Ronaldo became the provider for once as he set Guedes on goal with a brilliant through ball, however, the Portuguese number 17 could onlt hit a volley straight at the keeper. Portugal lead 1-0 and 40 minutes have been played now.

Jun 20, 2018 6:07 pm (IST)

Since Portugal took the lead in the opening minutes of the match, their attack has been nullified by the Moroccan players. Ronaldo is being man marked so getting the ball upto him is more difficult for the players now. 

Jun 20, 2018 6:03 pm (IST)

Free-kick: Stunning piece of play from both the teams as end to end football is being played by Portugal and Morocco. After a penalty shout is dismissed by the referee, following a Fonte challenged, Benatia on the other side brings down Mario. Ronaldo hits the free-kick but the ball strikes the wall. Portugal lead 1-0 after 31 minutes.

Jun 20, 2018 5:59 pm (IST)

Penalty Shout: Moroccan players make a huge appeal after Rafael 'downs' Amrabat on the right flank, supposedly inside the box. However, referree says nothing doing and even Morocco coach Renard's shouting on the touch-line doesn't convince the referee to change his mind and go for VAR. 27 minutes played and Portugal still lead 1-0

Jun 20, 2018 5:53 pm (IST)

Chance: Ziyach once again has a shy at the goal but his shot from distance goes into the glouves of Patricio. His quick feet are causing the defenders trouble on the right flank. 

Jun 20, 2018 5:51 pm (IST)

Chance: Ziyach is keeping things interesting on the other end of the goal which Ronaldo is doing on one end. This time, Ziaych finds space inside the D and shoots towards the goal but once again, Rui Patricio stands tall. 20 minutes have been played and Portugal still leads.

Jun 20, 2018 5:49 pm (IST)

Cristiano Ronaldo has now scored 85 international goals and he is one of the leading scorers in the world as far as goals for your country is concerned. He already as four to his name in this edition and will look to add to it in coming matches.

Jun 20, 2018 5:44 pm (IST)

Chance: Since going behind in the match, Moroccan players have issued a good fight back as they are now taking the attack to Portugal. This time, Ziyach met a cross with his head but the goal-bound shot was saved by keeper Pui Patricio. Portugal lead 1-0 with 11 minutes played in the first half.

Jun 20, 2018 5:37 pm (IST)
Jun 20, 2018 5:37 pm (IST)

GOLAZO: Cristiano Ronaldo has broken the deadlock in as early as the fourth minute of the match. A wonderful looped cross came in from the right and Ronaldo headed home the opener in emphatic style. Portugal lead 1-0 and CR7 now has four goals in in just 2 matches. 

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FIFA World Cup 2018, Portugal vs Morocco, Highlights: As It Happened
Cristiano Ronaldo. (FIFA Image)

A hat-trick from the five-time world player of the year snatched a thrilling 3-3 draw for the European champions against Spain in a heavyweight Group B showdown in Sochi. It was Ronaldo's 51st career hat-trick, and the 51st in the tournament's history, as the Real Madrid star became just the fourth player to score in four World Cups. "I am very happy, it's a nice personal record to have, one more in my career," said Ronaldo. "For me the most important thing is to emphasise what the team did against one of the favourites to win this World Cup." Despite lifting the trophy at Euro 2016, Portugal are not widely viewed as among the favourites in Russia but can take a big step towards the last 16 with victory over Morocco in Moscow on Wednesday.

"I think we are stronger than Morocco if we compare the two teams, but I'm not saying the game will be easy for us," striker Andre Silva told reporters at Portugal's training base. "We cannot underestimate them and must have respect for any opponent. Any game at the World Cup is difficult." It will be just the second meeting between the two countries, after Morocco beat Portugal 3-1 in the group stage at the 1986 finals. Morocco did not concede a single goal in the final qualifying round as they sealed a return to the World Cup for the first time in 20 years, but their knockout hopes hang by a thread after a 95th-minute own goal by Aziz Bouhaddouz against Iran. Herve Renard's men face a monumental challenge, with games to come against Portugal and Spain, but midfielder Faycal Fajr is adamant all is not lost for the Atlas Lions.

"If I said that we don't believe we can qualify it would be a lie," said Fajr, one of 17 players born abroad in Morocco's 23-man squad. I could throw out some examples, like the Argentina draw (1-1 with Iceland). Where there's a will there's a way. (The Portuguese) have two feet, two legs and they are humans like us. We lost a battle but we haven't lost the war. We're not dead," he added." Renard lamented that Morocco were "crucified by our own errors" in the loss to Iran, but the Frenchman is used to defying the odds, having led outsiders Zambia to a surprise triumph at the 2012 Africa Cup of Nations. He then became the first coach to win the continental title with two different teams three years later, guiding the Ivory Coast to glory. Morocco will need Renard to conjure up more magic to prevent an early exit, although Fajr says the mood in the camp remains positive. "Even after the defeat, the atmosphere was terrific," he said. "We've been waiting for this moment for 20 years, all Moroccans have been waiting for this for 20 years. We're one big family."
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