- Portugal defeated Switzerland 6-1 in the last 16 match of the World Cup.
- Portugal qualified for a quarterfinal encounter against giant slayers Morocco.
- Goncalo Ramos scored the tournament’s first hat trick for the FIFA World Cup 2022.
Goncalo Ramos’ brilliant hat-trick helped free-scoring Portugal defeat Switzerland 6-1 in their World Cup last-16 match on Tuesday, setting up a clash with big Morocco in the quarterfinals. Portugal has impressively advanced to the World Cup quarterfinals for the first time since 2006.
Cristiano Ronaldo was replaced by Portugal coach Fernando Santos, who was rewarded with a brilliant performance from his team. Ramos only had 10 minutes of action as a substitute in Qatar, but the youngster gave Portugal, who did not miss Ronaldo – a late replacement who had a goal ruled out for offside – a memorable performance.
Ramos gave Portugal the lead in the 17th minute by latching onto a pass from Joao Felix and slamming it past Swiss goalkeeper Yann Sommer at the near post from a sharp angle. The Swiss goalie stopped a late counterattack with his fingertip, preventing Ramos from scoring his second goal of the half as the Portuguese lead 2-0 at the halftime.
The 21-year-old Benfica striker added Portugal’s third goal six minutes after the break by netting Diogo Dalot’s low cross, and he completed his hat trick in the 67th minute with a deft finish.
Pepe extended Portugal’s advantage after 33 minutes with a strong header from a Bruno Fernandes corner, and Raphael Guerreiro added a fourth in the 55th. Rafael Leao then put the game ahead with a curling finish in additional time. Just before the hour mark, Manuel Akanji scored a consolation goal for Switzerland. Despite having plenty of possession, the Swiss were unable to score an attacking goal as Portugal scored six goals in the course of 90 minutes.
Ronaldo was benched a day after Santos expressed his disappointment with the striker’s behavior following his replacement in the team’s final group match against South Korea.
Ronaldo, 37, entered the game as a substitute in the 72nd minute to thunderous cheers, but Portugal had already won. Ronaldo had a few opportunities after entering the game, and he even had a momentary moment of scoring when he raced through and fired a low shot past Switzerland goalie Yann Sommer. To the disappointment of the fans that came to watch him, whether they were Portuguese or from other nations, the goal was disallowed for offside.
After the final whistle, Ronaldo left the field by himself while the other Portugal players stayed on the field to cheer on their supporters at one end of the stadium. After been released by Manchester United during the World Cup, the star striker is currently without a club.