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Bad luck doesn't deter Cristiano Ronaldo
by Paul Kennedy, June 21st, 2012 5:29PM

TAGS:  european championship, portugal


[EURO 2012 WRAP] Cristiano Ronaldo hit the post twice, bringing his total on the bad luck charts to four balls off the woodwork in four games, but he provided the winning touch with a header that he nodded off the ground and bounced over Petr Cech for the lone goal in Portugal's 1-0 win over the Czech Republic in Thursday's quarterfinal opener.

Ronaldo, whose two goals gave Portugal a 2-1 win over the Netherlands in the deciding group game, hit the post just before halftime after a sublime move to break free of his defender and again in second half when his free kick grazed the far post.

But just when it looked like the Portuguese would not rewarded for a dominating display in the second half -- they finished with a 20-2 edge in shots -- Ronaldo won the game with a flying header off Joao Moutinho's cross.

With three goals in his last two games, Ronaldo has silenced his critics who suggested he was unable to replicate for Portugal the form he had at Real Madrid.

"We had a lot of opportunities," he said. "The Czechs did not have any -- that's a great game."

The supporting cast of Raul Meireles, Nani and Moutinho also put in strong performances, raising Portuguese hopes that they could finally win a major championship.

"I think the chances [of reaching the final] are 50-50," said Ronaldo, "and we just have to believe in it."

Portugal will meet the Spain-France winner Wednesday in Donetsk in its fourth appearance in the European Championship semifinals.

  1. I w Nowozeniuk
    commented on: June 22, 2012 at 12:32 p.m.
    Me, me, and again me, me CR is a great player, yet a bit delusional. The Czechs put a scare to the Portuguese side which for the exception for CR don't have enough to get past the next opponent.
  1. Carlos Thys
    commented on: June 23, 2012 at 7:59 a.m.
    Portugal looked very ordinary all 90 minutes except some of the movements and play of C. Ronaldo. Nothing new here. I mean, did Helder Postiga even get one good shot off or header? Hugo Almeida looks horrible yet he provided more offense for Portugal in the first 10 minutes of the second half than most of what we'd seen from Portugal in the first 45 minutes of the match. Moutino hasn't shown much of anything and Nani seems an eternal child just out of his diapers. Sorry, I am a skeptic about all of this. Selassie did a very respectable job against C. Ronaldo in the first half of the game. Kadlec did his part, too. Are we really to believe that both of them (and others on the Czech squad) just "switched off" and let C. Ronaldo roam free as that corner kick was taken? This is RIGGED! It really is. C'mon. Everybody knows that C. Ronaldo scores a large number of his goals off his head; all these players have seen countless YouTube goals just like what was just done to them. And they leave him somehow unmarked? If Selassie marks C. Ronaldo out of this quarterfinal game, he's then commanding a top, top salary from one of Europe's elite top 16 clubs. And Bayer Leverkusen in Germany would not be able to hold onto the other Czech defender, Kadlec. That game was worth several million Euros to both of them...and they just "switched off?" We are all so gullible.

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