Portugal booked their place in the quarter-finals of the World Cup in Qatar after beating Switzerland by a wide margin in Gonzalo Ramos’ hat-trick. Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal defeated Switzerland by a huge margin of 6-1 in the last sixteen matches of the tournament. Portugal confirmed the last eight of the first FIFA World Cup since the 2006 edition.
Ramos scored a hat trick in the 17th, 51st, and 67th minutes of this match. This is the first hat trick of this World Cup. Although not in the starting eleven of the matches, Ronaldo entered the field as a substitute in the 73rd minute.
Before the match against Switzerland, there were rumors about Ronaldo. In the end, the fear of Ronaldo not playing came true. Portugal coach Fernando Santos did not keep Ronaldo, the captain of the team and the owner of the highest number of matches and goals for the country, in the first eleven against Switzerland. The last time Ronaldo sat on the bench was at the beginning of the match against Russia in Euro 2004.
Ronaldo-less Portugal was aggressive from the start against Switzerland at the Lucille Stadium in Lucille. Ramos-Pepera did not notice the star’s absence in the XI. Portugal tries to attack from the middle by creating a block in their own borders. In the first 15 minutes, Switzerland attacked the border twice, but it collapsed inside the box.
But Portugal did not have to wait long for the first goal. Portugal danced with the joy of the goal in the 17th minute. With a great understanding from outside the Swiss box, another attacking player, Juan Felix, passed the ball to striker Ramos inside the box. Ramos sent the ball into the net through the corner of Switzerland’s bar with a great left-footed shot after stopping the ball lightly. Swiss goalkeeper Ian Sommer had nothing to do but watch.
After leading 1-0, Portugal increased the edge of the attack. Midfielder Otavio took a shot from outside the box from Ramos’ pass in the 22nd minute. But it fell into the hands of the goalkeeper of Switzerland.
Portugal attacked again in the next minute. Pepe floated the ball to Ramos from midfield. The Swiss goalkeeper also caught the shot taken by Ramos from the D-box by controlling the flying ball.
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Switzerland got a good chance to score for the first time in the 30th minute. Switzerland gets a free kick from 25 yards out. Midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri’s shot deflected off Portugal goalkeeper Diogo Costa and over the bar.
Despite Ramos’ goal, Portugal was desperate to double the lead. In 33 minutes, Pepe’s great header scored the second goal for the Portuguese. The 39-year-old Pepe headed home a superbly-timed header between two Swiss players after midfielder Bruno Fernandes’ volley. Through this, Pepe made the unique feat of becoming the oldest goal scorer in the knockout phase of the World Cup.
Portugal narrowly missed a goal in the 43rd minute. Ramos took a left-footed shot after receiving the ball inside the box from Fernandes’ pass. The Switzerland goalkeeper denied Portugal a sure goal as his shot went wide to the left.
Portugal ended the first half with a 2-0 lead by the double goals of Ramos and Pep. Portugal was ahead in possession of the ball in this half. 53 percent of the ball was in their possession. Portugal took 6 shots at Switzerland’s goal. 5 of them were on target.
Portugal got the third goal after the break. Ramos is the owner of the goal this time. In the 51st minute of the match, Ramos sent the ball under the two legs of the Swiss goalkeeper Sommer after gently touching the cross of the defender Diogo Dalot from the right side (3-0).
Defender Rafael Guerreiro scored Portugal’s fourth goal to keep up with Ramos’ streak. In the 55th minute, Ramos took the ball from the middle of the counterattack and gave it to Guerreiro inside the D box. Guerreiro, who was in the gap, did not hurry and sent the ball over the head of the Switzerland goalkeeper into the net (4-0).
Switzerland got the first goal in the 58th minute after conceding a short goal. Swiss defender Manuel Akanji scored with a left corner kick.
21-year-old Ramos, who got a place in the team instead of Ronaldo, completed the hat-trick in the 67th minute. Ramos scored the first hat-trick in this World Cup after receiving the ball inside the box from Felix and floating in the air with a shot.
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Ronaldo came off the bench to celebrate all of Portugal’s goals. Portugal’s coach brought Ronaldo to the field in the 73rd minute when Portugal won by 5-1. Ronaldo took the field instead of Felix. The whole stadium burst into cheers as CR Seven entered the field.
In the 84th minute, Ronaldo got the ball from the middle and entered the box Switzerland. But it was ruled out for offside.
In the second minute of injury time, substitute Rafael Liao sent the ball into Switzerland’s net for the sixth time after receiving the ball from Dalot. The final whistle of the match was played after Liao’s goal. Portugal advanced to the quarterfinals with a huge 6-1 win. Portugal’s opponent in the last eight is Morocco. Morocco made history by beating Spain 3-0 on penalties in the last 16 matches to reach the quarter-finals.