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FIFA Confederations Cup

Ronaldo header sinks Russia

(FIFA.com)
  • Portugal register first win at FIFA Confederations Cup 2017
  • Cristiano Ronaldo’s early header earns victory over the hosts
  • Relive: As it happened, stats and more

Portugal claimed their first victory at the FIFA Confederations Cup 2017 after defeating Russia 1-0 in front of a crowd of 42,759 in Moscow on Wednesday evening.

Cristiano Ronaldo’s early header was enough to give the European champions all three points at the Spartak Stadium.

Despite their best efforts, particularly in the second half, the tournament hosts could not find a way past Portugal goalkeeper Rui Patricio in this Group A encounter.

FIFA.com team reporter analysis
"In the first half, Portugal were obviously the better side. Stanislav Cherchesov’s plan was not working, though it was an individual mistake that lead to Ronaldo's goal. Russia played with just Fedor Smolov up front, and until the 60th minute, he did not have a single opportunity. Russia improved considerably late in the game, particularly after substitutions were made, but Portugal never lost control."
Igor Borunov, Russia team reporter

"An impressive opening half from Portugal put them in the driving seat. After the early goal, it looked like they seemed on course to score two or three. Somehow though, they did not click up front, with the usually deadly partnership of Ronaldo and Andre Silva unusually subdued. Bernardo Silva was the most impressive of Fernando Santos’s changes for this match and he was involved in the majority of attacks. Portugal survived a nervy second half, but got the crucial three points and are now well placed to reach the semi-finals."
Marco Monteiro, Portugal team reporter

Budweiser Man of the Match
Having scored his 74th goal for Portugal, Cristiano Ronaldo proved highly influential again for the European champions and could have added to that early opener on a couple of occasions.

The stat
100 Wednesday evening was a special one for Igor Akinfeev. His start against Portugal made it a century of senior international appearances for Russia's goalkeeper and captain.

What's next
Mexico v Russia - Group A, 24 June
New Zealand v Portugal - Group A, 24 June

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