Bento: Portugal were better
© AFP

Portugal coach Paulo Bento said efficiency was the key to his side's 1-0 UEFA EURO 2012 quarter-final victory over Czech Republic.

Cristiano Ronaldo was the star of the show and scored the winning goal 11 minutes from time, but Bento said it was his side's collective ability to control the game in both defence and attack that made the real difference.

And that despite a tame opening to the game. "We didn't start very well in attack. We weren't very efficient when we were in possession of the ball in the first part of the game." he said.

"Then we dominated more. We controlled the game in a different way, we were playing quicker and then in the second half we showed great quality. We dominated the game throughout and it is very important that when you dominate the game you're efficient in attack as well as defence.

Our aim will be to beat Spain or France, there can't be any other goal for us and this is what we will try to do.
Paulo Bento, Portugal coach

"We showed this at various times in the second half. The extra day of recovery that the Czech Republic had [since the group stages] wasn't so apparent in this second half. We simply played better."

Next up Portugal will face defending and world champions Spain or France, and Bento claimed he has no preference as to who they play. "Our aim will be to beat Spain or France, there can't be any other goal for us and this is what we will try to do."

Although midfielders Raul Meireles and Joao Moutinho both played well and Nani showed occasional sparks of his undoubted talent, it was still the Ronaldo show. He hit the post twice, scored the winning goal and was a constant threat following the generally poor opening 25 minutes.

"Ronaldo played according to our tactical system, he has the capacity to play in the penalty area but also a little bit deeper," said Bento. "The first 20 to 25 minutes in the first half were a lot more intense but at the same time we showed a great capacity to react to the Czechs and that's why we really deserved this result."