Rediff.com  » Sports » FIFA WC PIX: Ronaldo sets record as Portugal pip Ghana

FIFA WC PIX: Ronaldo sets record as Portugal pip Ghana

November 25, 2022 00:06 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

Lawrence Ati Zigi of Ghana saves an attempt by Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal

IMAGE: Ghana's Lawrence Ati Zigi saves an attempt by Cristiano Ronaldo during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group H match between Portugal and Ghana. Photograph: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Cristiano Ronaldo drew a line under a tumultuous tournament build-up as he wrote his name in the record books to become the first player to score in five World Cups in a 3-2 victory for Portugal over Ghana on Thursday.

Ronaldo drilled home a penalty in the 65th minute of the Group H encounter to set his side on their way and while Andre Ayew equalised for Ghana, Portugal turned on the afterburners with two quick-fire goals to effectively seal the deal at Stadium 974.

 

Joao Felix produced a delicate finish to give them the lead and Rafael Leao added a third to hand Portugal their first win in the opening match of the World Cup since 2006, even if Osman Bukari pulled another one back for Ghana late on.

Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal reacts after a missed chance

IMAGE: Cristiano Ronaldo reacts after a missed chance. Photograph: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Ronaldo, a free agent after his second stint at Old Trafford ended abruptly on Tuesday, thumped home a dubiously-awarded penalty in the 65th minute after an innocuous coming together with Mohammed Salisu saw the referee point to the spot.

Ronaldo closed his eyes as he waited to begin his run-up, stuttered and smashed the ball into the net to the keeper's right.

Ghana fired back quickly though when Mohammed Kudus's cross found its way to Ayew who tapped home.

Portugal then revved into gear with Felix latching onto a Bruno Fernandes through ball and lifting his finish nonchalantly over the keeper.

Thomas Partey of Ghana controls the ball under pressure of Bernardo Silva

IMAGE: Thomas Partey of Ghana controls the ball under the pressure from Bernardo Silva. Photograph: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

Fernandes was the architect of their third goal too, playing another superb through-ball for substitute Leao to slide his finish across the keeper and into the bottom corner.

There was tension at the end, however, as Ghana pulled another goal back with Osman Bukari heading a cross from the left in the 89th minute.

Osman Bukari's 89th-minute headed reply set up an anxious ending for Portugal but they survived nine minutes of stoppage time to win their opening game of a World Cup for the first time in their last four appearances.

Portugal, who top the group with three points, next face Uruguay on Monday, when Ghana play South Korea.

Ruben Neves of Portugal battles for possession with Mohammed Kudus of Ghana

IMAGE: Ruben Neves of Portugal battles for possession with Mohammed Kudus of GhanaPhotograph: Catherine Ivill/Getty Images
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:
Source: REUTERS
© Copyright 2022 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

FIFA WORLD CUP 2022

FIFA WORLD CUP 2022