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Cristiano Ronaldo creates yet another record as Silva, Fernandes guide Portugal to Euro 2024 RO16

Cristiano Ronaldo creates yet another record as Silva, Fernandes guide Portugal to Euro 2024 RO16

This victory marked the third time Portugal won their opening two matches at the Euros (2000, 2008)

Bernardo Silva’s first goal at a major tournament, coupled with a disastrous own goal by Samet Akaydin and a Bruno Fernandes tap-in, propelled Portugal to a comfortable 3-0 victory over Turkey in UEFA Euro 2024 on Saturday. This win guaranteed Portugal’s qualification for the round of 16 as Group F winners.

Thrilling win for Portugal

Silva opened the scoring in the 21st minute after Nuno Mendes’ cross deflected kindly into his path, allowing him to rifle the ball home. Just seven minutes later, Akaydin, in a moment of confusion, passed the ball beyond his own goalkeeper, Altay Bayindir, doubling Portugal’s lead.

Bruno Fernandes sealed the win in the 56th minute when Cristiano Ronaldo, who could have become the oldest goalscorer in European Championship history, selflessly passed to his former Manchester United teammate for a simple tap-in.

Silva netted his 12th goal for Portugal, marking his first major tournament goal in his 15th appearance at either the World Cup or European Championship. Bruno Fernandes, with his 23rd goal for the national team, further solidified Portugal’s dominance. His goal was his second in major tournaments, adding to his growing tally for the national side.

Bruno Fernandes was instrumental in Portugal’s win, clocking 55 touches, winning seven duels, and regaining possession six times. He had four shots, and three tackles, and won three fouls, showcasing his all-around game.

Ronaldo’s Record-Breaking Assist

Ronaldo’s assist to Fernandes was his seventh in European Championship history, making him the player with the most assists in the competition since records began in 1968, according to Opta. This achievement further cements his legacy as one of the greatest players in the tournament’s history.

Portugal had an expected goals (xG) of 1.79 compared to Turkey’s 0.65. Portugal made 11 attempts, with three shots on target, while Turkey had three shots on target from 10 attempts. Notably, Portugal had 32 touches in the opposition box, whereas Turkey managed only 12.

This victory marked the third time Portugal won their opening two matches at the Euros (2000, 2008). It was also their fourth 3-0 win in the tournament’s history, previously beating Croatia (Euro 1996), Germany (Euro 2000), and Hungary (2021). Additionally, Portugal was 2-0 ahead in the first half of a Euros match for only the third time and the first since 2012 against Denmark.

To advance to the knockout rounds, Turkey must avoid defeat in their next match against the Czech Republic, who drew 1-1 with Georgia earlier on Saturday. Portugal’s victory has put them in a strong position as they look ahead to the round of 16.

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