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World Cup 2018, Portugal vs Morocco: 5 Talking Points

Sachin Bhat
Top 5 / Top 10
12.25K   //    20 Jun 2018, 22:37 IST

Portugal braved a valiant Morocco to eke out a win
Portugal braved a valiant Morocco to eke out a win

Portugal survived Morocco scare to walk away with all three points thanks to Cristiano Ronaldo's early goal that eventually proved to be enough.

The Atlas Lions were the better side for large spells of the match, especially in the second-half when they triggered a barrage of attacks and looked to score at any point. But Morocco lacked the cutting edge to kill the chances and that was their undoing eventually.

Portugal are on the brink of a last 16 spot at the FIFA World Cup 2018, but it wasn't a performance to write home about. There's plenty of kinks to iron out before they even think of making it big in Russia.

Here are the major talking points from the game:

#1 Ronaldo gets another record, but needs to be involved more

Despite the goal, Ronaldo didn't play well
Despite the goal, Ronaldo didn't play well

Cristiano Ronaldo added yet another feather to his cap when he headed home the fourth-minute opener. The Portuguese surpassed Hungarian legend Ferenc Puskas in the all-time lists of international goalscorers with what was his 85th strike, now trailing only Iran's Ali Dei.

It's a terrific achievement and one that's difficult to emulate, but Ronaldo disappeared into obscurity after that. With Morocco keeping Portugal on the edge with high pressing, the Real Madrid ace cut a secluded figure upfront.

He didn't track back to help out in the defense, but when he was on the ball, he was roughed up by the Moroccan defense, who didn't afford him any space to exercise his usual attacking flair.

Like against Spain, Ronaldo was a beneficiary two more free-kick in dangerous areas, but like his record in the past, could only ram it into the wall.

His goal although proved to be enough today, but against bigger sides later in the tournament, needs to get more involved than just waiting for the service.

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Sachin Bhat
Football aficionado. Writing enthusiast. Aspiring journalist.
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