Frustration for Ronaldo as Portugal draws with Mexico
Frustration for Ronaldo as Portugal draws with Mexico
19 Junio, 2017, 14:17
Portugal full-back Cedric Soares' 88th-minute goal seemed to have given the Iberians a win but their Central American opponents made them pay for switching off at a corner when Mexico defender Hector Moreno rose high to head home a dramatic equaliser.
Portugal's advance in the early stages was soon rewarded by Pepe latching onto a long distance effort from winger Nani, only to be retrospectively ruled offside.
Cristiano Ronaldo's initial shot hit the crossbar then Pepe "scored" from the rebound in the 22nd minute.
Cristiano Ronaldo has made his first public remarks since news broke of his desire to leave Real Madrid, though he made sure only to focus on Portugal's latest match against Mexico.
The highly entertaining fixture saw Cristiano Ronaldo put through a sublime assist for Ricardo Quaresma who slotted home the opening goal in the 35th minute.
"We played a team that has very good, technical players", said Portugsl coach Fernando Santos. "We want to send a big hug to everyone in Portugal for what they are going through, which is absolutely bad".
Santos' side improved from there, though, and when Carlos Salcedo allowed Ronaldo in on goal on the left, the forward quickly adjusted to an uncharacteristic stumble to slip a pass into the box for Quaresma, who coolly rounded Guillermo Ochoa to prod into the net.
Host Russia, ranked 63rd in the world, opens Group A play on Saturday against New Zealand in St. Petersburg. Despite the fact that the final whistle did not reveal the victor, having recorded in the asset of both teams on 1 point, Mexico still remains the leader of the group, reducing the gap from the nearest pursuer to 3 points.
Ronaldo has not spoken to the media in Kazan and his staff said it would not comment about the recent issues involving the player. Three Mexican players (Raul Jimenez, Miguel Layun, and HectorHerrera) ply their trade in the Portuguese league.
The FIFA Player of the Year, who had scored 11 goals in seven games coming into Sunday's encounter, was perhaps not as influential as usual but was still named man-of-the-match. If he's able to shine and Guillermo Ochoa is able to deliver more masterclass efforts in net, the Mexican side can be unsafe.
This will be the first time Portugal are competing in the Confederations Cup but they are expected to go all the way, along with Germany, as a serious contender for the title.
With a few minutes remaining, Cedric blasted a shot from a tight angle that squeezed past the 'keeper, but Moreno's late header rescued a point with only a minute remaining. Mexico has only lost one game in its last five, its latest result was a 1-1 draw with the United States while its greatest victory was a 3-0 win against Honduras.
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