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Home / Sports / Football / Portugal vs Uruguay: A hair-splitting tale of a goal

Portugal vs Uruguay: A hair-splitting tale of a goal

I don’t believe it matters who touched the ball, says Bruno Fernandes
Cristiano Ronaldo.
Cristiano Ronaldo.
File picture

Angshuman Roy   |   Doha   |   Published 30.11.22, 03:54 AM

A funny thing happened in the tunnel as Portugal and Uruguay were getting ready for the second half of their World Cup match at the Lusail Stadium on Monday. Bernardo Silva tried to dishevel Cristiano Ronaldo’s hair and the Portugal captain was not amused. He patted his hair into place and came onto the pitch.

Nine minutes into the second half, Portugal’s Bruno Fernandes got a ball on the left. It seemed he would go down the left flank before he changed his way and cut back. He curled in a cross for his captain, who correctly read Fernandes’s mind. At first, it seemed the ball caressed Cristiano’s hair, fooled Uruguay goalkeeper Sergio Rochet and nestled into the net.

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Arms stretched, Cristiano ran in celebration. The Lusail Stadium, read the Cristiano Ronaldo fan zone, erupted in joy. There was confusion on who was the scorer. Ronaldo? Or Fernandes? Finally, the screen flashed Fernandes’ name. Technology in the match ball proved conclusively that Ronaldo did not make any contact for the opener.

Ronaldo, who was all pumped up thinking he had equalled Eusebio’s record tally of nine goals, could only offer a smile.

“In the match between Portugal and Uruguay, using the Connected Ball Technology housed in Adidas’s Al Rihla Official Match Ball, we are able to definitively show no contact on the ball from Cristiano Ronaldo for the opening goal in the game,” a Fifa statement would say later.

Fernandes got his second goal three minutes into the second-half injury time. After the match they celebrated their entry into the last16 stage, the third team after France and Brazil, laughing, hugging and spraying water at each other.

“I don’t believe it matters who touched the ball,” said Fernandes at the post-match news conference. “At that point in time, I thought Cristiano touched the ball and I was passing to him... but all that is important is that we got through.”



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