Portugal 3-0 Algeria: Ronaldo assists in last World Cup warm-up

Ronaldo, Portugal 2018 World Cup jersey

No goal in his last two matches for club and country but Cristiano Ronaldo showed good signs ahead of Portugal vs Spain at the World Cup.

It’s been almost 15 years since his senior national team debut in a 1-0 win over Kazakhstan in August 2003. The skipper of the Seleccao received his 150th cap for his country on Thursday night in Lisbon.

The friendly match, which served as his one and only 2018 FIFA World Cup warm-up, was contested against Riyad Mahrez’s Algeria. Stomping his authority in both flanks, Ronaldo generously exhibited fancy footwork and speed to unsettle the Algerian’s defence in the first period of the game.

Portugal were 2-0 up at the break, thanks to Gonzalo Guedes’ opener and Bruno Fernandes’ pinpoint header. The latter was set up by his talismanic captain inside the 36th minute.

Not satisfied by his phenomenal assist, Cristiano doubled his efforts to fire the ball past the goal line. He played a more central role in attack and came close through a diving free-kick powerfully punched away by Algerian goalkeeper Salhi.

After that, the 33-year-old came knocking again but nervousness soon got the better of him. This was summed by an off-target overhead kick, shortly before he handed his armband to Pepe and came off the pitch in the 74th minute for Silva.

Ronaldo’s inability to find the net, however, cannot overshadow his excellent first-half display and early second-half contributions. Here’s a recap of the captain’s highlights through a series of tweets.

The Seleccao will soon jet off to Russia where they’ll play their opening 2018 FIFA World Cup match against Spain at the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi. The tournament could see Cristiano Ronaldo score in a record eight consecutive major international tournaments.

Portugal’s 2018 World Cup fixtures

*All Portugal kick-off times are displayed in GMT (UTC+0)


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.