Portugal 1-0 Czech Republic: Ronaldo a constant threat and eventually gets the winner


“Cristiano Ronaldo was a greater goalscoring threat than the Czech side put together, as Portugal narrowly won a game that should have been safe much earlier. Paulo Bento named an unchanged side again – he’s played this XI in Portugal’s last six competitive games, four at the Euros, two in the play-offs against Bosnia. Michael Bilek was without Tomas Rosicky again, and used Vladimir Darida rather than Daniel Kolar in Rosicky’s attacking midfield role. This was a one-sided game, with Portugal superior all over the pitch.” Zonal Marking

Ronaldo shining on international stage
“He played on the left. He played on the right. He sometimes played as a center forward. He powered Portugal into Euro 2012’s semifinals. Sixteen years ago this Saturday at Euro ’96, Czech Karel Poborsky’s unique lob sunk a Portuguese team about which so much had been expected since winning the World Youth Championships in 1991. Euro 2004 saw both teams felled by the same blunt sword when the Czechs lost to Greece in the semis. In turn, Portugal lost in that tournament’s final, a night when Cristiano Ronaldo shed teenage tears in front of a largely unsympathetic world.” ESPN (Video)

Three thoughts: Ronaldo plays the star in victory over Czech Republic
“Three thoughts after Portugal’s 1-0 victory against the Czech Republic sent the Portuguese to the semifinals of Euro 2012: • Cristiano Ronaldo is a fantastic player. We knew this already, of course, but Ronaldo was terrific in three different positions against the Czechs: as a winger, as a No. 10 and as a center-forward. He loomed over the game like a colossus in the way that few players in the history of soccer are able to do, considering there are 11 players on each team.” SI

Euro 2012: Cristiano Ronaldo happy to lead and let team-mates follow
“Cristiano Ronaldo is emerging as the player of this tournament, or at least the striker other teams have to find a way to stop, yet it does Portugal a disservice to depict them as a one-man team. Even if by his recent standards this was a quiet, unflashy, almost workmanlike performance from the Portuguese captain, he still hit a post at both ends and scored his third goal of the competition just when his side needed it. The Czechs could not keep him out for 90 minutes, though the only goal was a team goal, with Ronaldo merely supplying the emphatic finish.” Guardian

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