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17.11.2020 » Croatia 2-3 Portugal. A last victory in the competition's goodbye

Cristiano Ronaldo and Modric in Croatia 2-3 Portugal

Portugal said goodbye to this year's UEFA Nations League with a 3-2 win in Split, against Croatia, as France clinched the spot of the group and moves forward to the competition's final-four. Cristiano Ronaldo had a full-game appearance, but couldn't score tonight...

With their fate already sealed in the UEFA Nations League, Portugal visited Split to face Croatia this Tuesday night, hoping to walk away from this competition with another win despite the natural lack of motivation to fight for the 3 points. On the other hand, Croatia was in risk of getting relegated one division in case Sweden collected more points than them in tonight's round of fixtures, so the pressure was definitely piling on the hosts. Nevertheless and since Sweden lost their game against France in Paris, Croatia succeeded in securing the 3rd spot despite tonight's 3-2 loss against Portugal and no harm was done. In terms of highlights, Rúben Dias made his debut scoring for the Portuguese National Team and he made it twice, while João Félix also wrote his name on the scoresheet after a good assist from Liverpool's Diogo Jota.

Cristiano Ronaldo game photos in Croatia vs Portugal
Croatia 2-3 Portugal
- Goals and highlights:

All Cristiano Ronaldo actions vs Croatia:




New faces in Portugal's lineup...

Since the loss against France last Saturday, the Portuguese Team knew their hopes to go through to the UEFA Nations League final-four were dead and no matter what happened today in Split, the Seleção wasn't going to move from the 2nd place of their group. With that in mind, Fernando Santos made a few changes to his lineup, bringing in 5 new faces to the starting eleven.

Rui Patrício remained in goal, but the back four in front of him suffered multiple changes. Mário Rui played on the left, Nélson Semedo took the right wing, while in the center Rúben Dias and Rúben Semedo paired up. In midfield, Danilo, João Moutinho and Bruno Fernandes grabbed the starting spots and backed up an attacking trio formed by Diogo Jota, João Félix and of course, Cristiano Ronaldo. Not a bad eleven on paper, despite a few experiments from the Portuguese manager...

The only goal scored in the first half was delivered Chelsea's midfielder, Mateo Kovacic. The Croatian saw his first shot blocked by Rui Patrício, but was lucky enough to see the rebound falling near him and didn't waste a second chance in front of goal to put his nation on the lead. Portugal was playing better and looking the more dangerous side on the pitch, but the hosts proved to be more efficient and went into half-time leading by one.

Cristiano Ronaldo in action in Croatia vs Portugal




Most goals were saved for the second half...

The best was saved for the second half, as multiple goals were about to come... One of the key moments in tonight's game took place in the 51st minute, when the hosts' midfielder, Marko Rog, saw a second yellow and a consequent red card. The incident definitely impacted Croatia and as if that wasn't penalizing enough, Portugal scored the equalizer immediately after, when a free-kick from Cristiano Ronaldo rebounded to Rúben Semedo, who wasn't selfish at all inside the box and assisted Rúben Dias for his first goal of the night.

Portugal kept pushing and charging on, until they eventually got their second goal and their first lead of the night. This time, Diogo Jota exploited the space on the back of Croatia's defense, used his hand to help controlling a bouncing ball and then assisted João Félix for an easy goal. Since the referees didn't spot the Jota's handball and there is no VAR available in the competition, the goal counted and Portugal found themselves in front with still 30 minutes left to be played.

Croatia wasn't going to give up on grabbing a positive result from this game just yet though and 5 minutes later, in the 65th minute, Kovacic completed a brace and sent everything back to square one. The former Real Madrid midfielder received a pass from Vlasic and from just outside the box, he picked the far low corner to beat Rui Patrício for the second time on the night. A good finish from the Croatian, who had just scored his 3rd international goal in his career.

With a 2-2 on the scoreboard and Sweden losing in France, Croatia didn't feel the need to risk much more and it looked like we were going to end this game with a draw. However, a final goal was saved for the last minute of the game and once again it would Rúben Dias hitting the back of the net. The Manchester City defender was in the right place to score when Croatia's goalkeeper made a huge mistake by dropping the ball from his hands and just like that, Portugal got in front again. There would be no time left for a reaction, so Fernando Santos' and his pupils left Croatia with the 3 points in the bag.

Cristiano Ronaldo rises to head the ball

Portugal line-up vs Croatia:

Goalkeeper: Rui Patrício
Defenders: Mário Rui, Rúben Dias, Rúben Semedo, Nélson Semedo
Midfielders: Danilo, João Moutinho, Bruno Fernandes
Attackers: Diogo Jota, João Félix, Cristiano Ronaldo.

Match stats provided by www.ronaldo7.net
Croatia
vs
Portugal
2
Goals
3
7
Shots
17
3
Shots on goal
8
4
Corner kicks
12
15
Fouls commited
10
3
Yellow cards
1
1
Red cards
0
40%
Ball possession
60%

Cristiano Ronaldo next game for Juventus in the Serie A is on November 21, against Cagliari. You can watch Juventus vs Cagliari, Peru vs Argentina, Belgium vs Denmark, Uruguay vs Brazil, Bosnia vs Italy, and Poland vs Netherlands, all matches provided from our soccer streaming game pages.

Juventus next game:
Juventus vs Cagliari
kick-off time (21-11-2020):

Beijing (China) | UTC/GMT+7: 02:45
Jakarta
(Indonesia)
| UTC/GMT+6: 01:45
India (New Delhi) |
UTC/GMT+4.30: 00:15
Italy (Turin) |
UTC/GMT+1: 20:45
Spain
(Madrid) | UTC/GMT+1: 20:45
Portugal and England (Lisbon/London) | UTC/GMT+0: 19:45
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) | UTC/GMT-4: 15:45
New York (United States) | UTC/GMT-5: 14:45
Los Angeles (United States) | UTC/GMT-8: 11:45

Sources: ronaldo7.net / goal.com / beinsports.com / whoscored.com

Cristiano Ronaldo during Croatia 2-3 Portugal

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