Ronaldo's Portugal held by Mexico at Confederations Cup

Pauline Gross
June 19, 2017

Substitute Cedric Soares looked like being the European champions' hero with his 86th-minute deflected shot, but Moreno's header from a corner spoiled the Southampton defender's celebration of his first global goal to deny Portugal victory. "We faced the European champions, a team that plays at a very high level, and we played equal to them". However, the VAR disallowed the goal for an offside infringement earlier in the move.

The FIFA Player of the Year, who had scored 11 goals in seven games coming into Sunday's encounter, was perhaps not as influential as usual but was still named man-of-the-match.

Ronaldo teed up Ricardo Quaresma to fire Portugal ahead in the first half in Kazan, but the goal was cancelled out before the break by Mexico striker Javier Hernandez's bullet header.

Portugal's William Carvalho, left, and Mexico's Raul Jimenez fight for the ball during the Confederations Cup, Group A soccer match between Portugal and Mexico, at the Kazan Arena, Russia, Sunday, June 18, 2017.

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Portugal: Patrício 6, Cédric 7, Fonte 5, Pepe 7, Guerreiro 6, William 6, Moutinho 6, André Gomes 6, Quaresma 7, Nani 6, Ronaldo 7.

The second half had little action until the final 10 minutes when, after goalkeeper Ochoa brilliantly saved Andre Silva's header, Soares' lung-bursting run into the penalty area saw him score with a huge deflection off Hector Herrera.

"34" - GOAL! Portugal 1-0 Mexico. Santos' side improved from there, though, and when Carlos Salcedo allowed Ronaldo in on goal on the left, the forward quickly adjusted to an uncharacteristic stumble to slip a pass into the box for Quaresma, who coolly rounded Guillermo Ochoa to prod into the net. Salceio slips, and Ronaldo taps the ball across for Quaresma to cut past the "keeper for an easy finish". Hernandez scores - A bad error from Raphael gives Vela the ball on the right-hand side, in the box. "But we are not anxious, there are two games left, we still have chances".

Portugal may have thought they were starting their maiden Confederations Cup with a win but Moreno scored from a corner to deny them late on.

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