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Ronaldo scores again as Portugal and Uruguay enjoy narrow FIFA World Cup wins

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Cristiano Ronaldo scored his fourth goal of the FIFA World Cup today as Portugal and Uruguay each enjoyed 1-0 victories in their respective clashes with Morocco and Saudi Arabia.

Both the beaten teams are now eliminated from the tournament despite still having one match remaining.

Ronaldo required just four minutes to add to his opening game hat-trick against Spain as Portugal met Morocco at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow.

He evaded his markers before diving to get on the end of a João Moutinho cross and planting the ball firmly in the back of the net.

The Real Madrid superstar has now scored Portugal’s past five goals in World Cup Finals and is the first player to achieve this feat since Russia’s Oleg Salenko in 1994.

In truth, Portugal were poor today and, in many ways, lucky to beat a Morocco team, who showed plenty of intent but no end product.

Morocco, who lost their opening game of the tournament 1-0 to Iran, are now guaranteed to be eliminated from Group B.

Rui Patrício produced a superb one-handed diving save to deny a Younes Belhanda header in the North African side’s best opportunity.

“It’s a World Cup – this is a strong team, as were Morocco, but we have to grow,” Portugal manager Fernando Santos said afterwards.

“We did well defensively and we played well, but we need more than that.

“We have to change and earn more possession.”

Uruguay produced another workmanlike display to ensure they and Russia each progress from Group A before their showdown in Samara on Monday (June 25).

The team are yet to set the World Cup alight but are defensively solid and capitalised from some terrible goalkeeping when Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed Alowais missed contact with the ball after he charged off his line for a corner.

It duly dropped to Luis Suarez, who stroked the ball into the empty net on his 100th international appearence.

Saudi Arabia and Egypt, beaten 3-1 by Russia in Saint Petersburg last night, are each now eliminated.

Spain are playing Iran here at the Kazan Arena in today’s other match.

Denmark are due to face Australia at the Cosmos Arena in Samara tomorrow in Group C before France meet Peru at Yekaterinburg’s Central Stadium.

Argentina will also seek to improve on their opening draw with Iceland when they are scheduled to face Croatia at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium in Group D.

Nick Butler is senior reporter at insidethegames.biz. Used with permission.

 

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