Portugal secure 2-0 victory against Liechtenstein

Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal (C) attempts an overhead kick during the UEFA EURO 2024 European qualifier match between Liechtenstein and Portugal at Rheinpark Stadion on November 16, 2023 in Vaduz, Liechtenstein.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored, helping Portugal secure a 2-0 victory against Liechtenstein in the Group J clash on Thursday. The 38-year-old now shares the top scorer position with Belgium’s Romelu Lukaku in the Euro 2024 qualifying campaign.

Having already secured their spot in the finals, Portugal leads Group J with 27 points, eight ahead of second-placed Slovakia. Liechtenstein remains at the bottom with zero points after nine games.

Despite Portugal manager Roberto Martinez choosing not to rest regular starters, his team struggled against the lower-ranked opponents, and the deadlock persisted in the first half. However, in the opening minute of the second half, Diogo Jota’s through ball set up Ronaldo, who cut between two defenders and unleashed an unstoppable left-footed shot that found the net after grazing the crossbar.

Ronaldo further solidified his position as the all-time top scorer in international football, reaching 128 goals in 204 matches.

In the 56th minute, Joao Cancelo extended Portugal’s lead, capitalising on a goalkeeper error by Benjamin Buechel, who was out of position, and struck the ball into the empty net.

Portugal host Iceland in their final qualifying game on November 19, and then Roberto Martinez can begin to solely focus on his first international tournament with Portugal.

The Spanish coach will be hoping to fair much better than his previous European Championship campaign with Belgium as they crashed out in the quarter-final stage in 2021, losing 2-1 to the eventual winners Italy.

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