Portugal went into the game knowing a draw would be enough to see them through into the knockout stages, although in the end they cruised into the semifinals with a comprehensive win over the All Whites – who had no chance of qualifying having lost their opening two games.
Ronaldo’s goal was his 75th with Portugal, taking him level with Sandor Kocsis in second on the list of worldwide goals for European players, and he said he was happy to contribute. The Portugal skipper bagged his third consecutive “Man of the Match” honours but didn’t keep the award.
“It was hard to play better than we played because the grass was not very good”.
“I hope they can get the pitch in better condition because it’s always important for the quality of the match, especially where you have teams which are technically strong and fast”.
Portuguese team manager, Fernando Santos says: “I warned my players not let them win balls in the air, and the team reacted very well”.
“The tournament is unfortunately over for us but we want to thank the fans”, coach Stanislav Cherchesov said in a video statement to supporters.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored a penalty in the 33rd minute to put Portugal ahead as his side eased through to the semifinals.
Manchester City signing Bernardo Silva has taken to social media to update supporters on an injury sustained while on worldwide duty with Portugal at the Confederations Cup.
Mexico, which finished the group phase with a +2 goal differential, came from behind on Saturday to defeat Russian Federation 2-1 at Kazan Arena.
Nevertheless Russia took the lead through an Aleksandr Samedov on 25 minutes, before falling behind five minutes later when controversy raised its head again in the form of Araujo heading over Akinfeev to level the score.
Andre Silva wrapped up a comfortable victory with a fierce angled finish on 80 minutes, and Nani added a fourth in stoppage time.
KAZAN, Russia (AP) – He may be a great player, but Portugal is not just Cristiano Ronaldo.
Mexico winger Hirving Lozano took advantage of an bad mix-up in the Russian defence to score an extraordinary goal which gave his side a 2-1 win and knocked the Confederations Cup hosts out of the tournament on Saturday.
Mexico might have made an inauspicious start against Russian Federation, falling behind to Alexander Samedov’s opener, but their fans were primed and ready for action long before kick-off.
The veteran forward has always worked well as Ronaldo’s partner up front, helping create scoring opportunities and being precise with his finishing in front of the goal.
Substitute Igor Smolnikov blazed over from close range with quarter of an hour remaining to compound Russia’s misery.