The Lusitanians suffer over 80 ‘until Orban’s own goal on Raphael’s shot. Then CR7 is unleashed with two goals (one from a penalty)
A crueler sport than football have yet to invent it. Portugal beat Hungary 3-0 with three goals in the last 10 minutes plus injury time: Raphael Guerreiro and a brace from Cristiano Ronaldo, one from a penalty. So far, the norm, especially the need for the Portuguese in the “black run” group with France and Germany.
The point is that Hungary up to the 80th minute deserved all the points they were earning: great intensity, tactical attention and heart, a lot of heart. Then everything changed with a touch of nastiness because the first goal came with two carom balls and Orban, hitherto among the best in Hungary, became a negative protagonist: he deflected Guerreiro’s shot on goal and caused the penalty to double. . “From hero to zero”, “from hero to zero”, in two minutes.
Ronaldo, of course, is the big issue. Entering the field, he became the only footballer in history to set foot in five different European Championships: since 2004, he has always been there. With the first of his two goals he detached Platini and became the first biped in double figures per goal in the final stages of the European Championships. The 3-0, with dribbling on Gulacsi, brought the score to 11. Here is yet another record to add to the collection. The Iranian Ali Daei with his record of goals in the national team is now only three steps away: 109 against 106.
Hungary hinted at their match plan in minute 1: defending close and short, defending together and defending strong. Result: a red wall in front of Gulacsi. Portugal tried to get the ball rolling but never put in the match-up charge of their life. With these premises, it is normal that Fernando Santos has had plenty of possession but opportunities with the limiter. The main one up to the advantage came after 43 minutes: Bruno Fernandes’ polite ball for Ronaldo who alone, a stone’s throw from Gulacsi, set as high as any Pauleta. Rather, the Leipzig goalkeeper had to struggle twice on Diogo Jota and once on a long shot from Bruno Fernandes. Curious that, with all these champions, the most decisive was the last in the hierarchy: Rafa Silva of Benfica. He entered the second half, created the 1-0, took the penalty of 2-0 and gave the assist for the 3-0.
Side note. The real show was the Hungarian fans. The Puskas Arena was full – 61,000 people – and for the noise it was worth a rock concert. The people in red screamed for a shot by Szalai (and that’s okay) but also for a closure on Ronaldo, for a falletto on Lovrecsics, for a ball stolen by Schäfer. XL excitement after months without an audience and long minutes at the entrance, between old queues at the entrances (and who was more used to it?) And employees to check that everyone had the yellow anti-Covid bracelet needed to enter. Hungary on the pitch responded in the same way – triple energy and aggression – and the 61,000 recognized it. At the end, standing ovations and applause for everyone. After a 0-3, massì.
June 15, 2021 (change June 15, 2021 | 23:45)
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