Cristiano Ronaldo, at 33, has answered his critics spectacularly once again after a dull first-half of the season.
After scoring two late goals against Egypt and leading Portugal to a 2-1 win in an international friendly, Ronaldo would have been expecting a similar result on Monday against Netherlands. But that wasn’t the case.
Fernando Santos’ side were comprehensively beaten 3-0 after goals from Memphis Depay, Ryan Babel and Virgil van Dijk.
And to make it seem all worse, Ronaldo had a moment to forget, that was, well, kind of embarrassing to say the least.
After creating space from the right, just on the edge of the opposition box, Ronaldo tried to take a shot at goal with his left foot. However, instead of making contact with the ball, CR7 actually hit the turf and went to the ground.
Even worse, he started appealing for a penalty claim. Well, you’ll have to watch it (below) to believe it.
CÒMIC. Portugal perd 0-3 davant Holanda i Cristiano reclama aquesta falta… pic.twitter.com/ed1LpSxVTj
— LaTdP (@LaTdP) March 26, 2018
Argentina forward Lionel Messi will not play against Spain, Mundo Deportivo has reported ahead of Tuesday’s international friendly.
The 30-year-old missed Friday’s win over Italy with a hamstring injury and it looks like the maestro’s problem hasn’t fully healed.
On Monday, coach Jorge Sampaoli said that the Barcelona legend would only play in the clash at Atletico Madrid’s Wanda Metropolitano Stadium if he was fully fit.
“Messi trained with the group normally so he is available to play. If there was a risk, Leo would have said so,” Sampaoli told a press conference.
“Before the game against Italy Leo said he could not play. But he has trained the last two days. We will define the starting XI later,” he added.
More to follow…
Portugal had a rather forgetful night on Monday after being handed a 3-0 loss by Netherlands, as they prepare for their bid to win the 2018 World Cup campaign in Russia.
Goals from Memphis Depay, Ryan Babel and Virgil van Dijk before half-time meant Fernando Santos’ side had an uphill task ahead of them in the second-half.
What looked an almost impossible task then got even more so after Joao Cancelo was sent off in the 61st minute.
Soon after, Cristiano Ronaldo was substituted after enduring a frustrating night on the pitch, but only after – not one, not two, but three pitch invaders hurried onto the pitch to meet the Real Madrid superstar.
One of the pitch invaders even gave Ronaldo a kiss on his cheeks.
And while the disappointment of the scoreline was evident on Ronaldo’s face, the five-time Ballon d’or winner handled the situation well.
Watch how the incident happened, below.