Cristiano Ronaldo leads Portugal to win over Morocco
Cristiano Ronaldo’s early goal has given Portugal a 1-0 win over World Cup Group B rivals Morocco.
The result has knocked Morocco out of the competition after they lost to Iran last Friday.
Ronaldo made the most of some poor defending in the opening four minutes when he was left unmarked to head in Joao Moutinho’s cross.
The Real Madrid man could have had his second when he was played in by left-back Raphael Guerreiro but the show went wide.
Morocco grew into the game but struggled to breach the Portugal defence. Hakim Ziyech worked his way into the penalty area but his shot was blocked by Jose Fonte.
Mehdi Benatia then had a great chance from Ziyech’s corner but his header was straight at Rui Patricio.
Portugal could have gone two up before half-time when Ronaldo played a good through ball to Goncalo Guedes but his shot was straight at Morocco goalkeeper Munir Mohamedi.
Morocco had their chances to level in the second half. Younes Belhanda failed to test Rui Patricio first time around, but had a superb chance three minutes later.
Ziyech’s free-kick was flicked towards goal by the Galatasaray midfielder but Rui Patricio dived low to his right to push the ball over his own crossbar.
Benatia should have done better when Portugal failed to clear a free-kick but he shot over from 12 yards before and the Juventus centre-back then headed wide from a Ziyech free-kick.
Another good chance fell for Benatia in stoppage time but his strike went over from 12 yards and time ran out on Morocco’s World Cup campaign.