Edinson Cavani punishes Portugal with two brilliant goals

Portugal

Portugal

Edinson Cavani's fine double secured Uruguay a 2-1 win over Portugal and a spot in the quarter-finals of the World Cup. "We have a young and ambitious squad", he said. "The team played well".

"I am sure that Portugal will continue to be one of the best teams in the world".

Ronaldo then praised the organisation of the tournament in Russian Federation, saying every facet of it was to the highest standard. It was two weeks ago that Ronaldo scored a hat trick in the same stadium against Spain, stroking his chin after the first goal to imply he was the "greatest of all time".

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Earlier, Portugal coach Fernando Santos said he hoped Ronaldo would remain part of the global set-up.

Portugal unmistakably dictated the game, but despite trying every which way, came up short due to their struggles breaking down the well-organised Uruguay defence.

Ronaldo will be 37 when the next FIFA World Cup is held in Qatar and the Portugal captain would not give any clues as to his future plans.

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In between all of the gorgeous goals, ugly own goals, and remarkable upsets, Ronaldo helping Cavani get off the field will likely go down as one of the tournament's most memorable moments.

While Real Madrid's Ronaldo will also be bitterly disappointed to be heading home earlier than planned from Russian Federation, he at least has the consolation of having won his country's first ever European Championship, two years ago in France.

That was the first goal the twice World Cup champions had conceded in the tournament in Russian Federation, but another moment of brilliance from Cavani put them back ahead seven minutes later at the packed Fisht Stadium overlooking the Black Sea.

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The four early goals in this year's tournament had put him in position to contend for the "Golden Boot" trophy, but he was surpassed by England striker Harry Kane's five goals in the group stage. He also was almost given a red card when his elbowing of an opponent was reviewed on video. He only spoke briefly with the media in Russian Federation. Ronaldo may have provided more fireworks, but if World Cup success is the standard by which we measure greatness, the Ronaldo and Messi debate looks set to rage on, with both failing to progress beyond the Round of 16. "We tried our best and we played a good game".

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