Although they did it the hard way, Portugal secured their passage to Brazil 2014 and thanks in no small part to the heroics of Cristiano Ronaldo. It will be the country’s sixth appearance at FIFA’s flagship event.
Monaco have reclaimed the top spot in Ligue 1 from Paris Saint-Germain despite mustering only a 1-1 draw against Reims on Sunday, while Nantes continued their good run of form with a 3-1 win over Rennes.
In our weekly round-up of forthcoming birthdays, we take a look at the respective careers of Der Kaiser, an African FIFA World Cup legend and a couple of midfield maestros, who will all be celebrating this week.
Cristiano Ronaldo hit a second half hat-trick to see off Northern Ireland in Belfast, after the hosts had led at the break. There were three red cards in an ill-tempered game as Helder Postiga, Chris Brunt and Kyle Lafferty were all dismissed.
Monaco battled from behind to beat hosts Marseille 2-1 to move top of the Ligue 1 table Sunday, while Saint-Etienne bounced back from their UEFA Europa League exit and beat Bordeaux 2-1 and Montpellier drew at Nice 2-2.
Fresh from helping Porto win their third straight title and then signing for Monaco, Portugal midfielder Joao Moutinho spoke to FIFA.com about their crunch Brazil 2014 qualifier with Russia.