News Archive

World Cup, group stage

Portugal 3 - Spain 3

Spain kicked off the World Cup with a thrilling 3-3 draw against neighbours Portugal, a match worthy of a tie between the last two European champions. The game was overshadowed by the sacking of Lopetegui just two days earlier after the coach announced he had signed for Real Madrid, and stand-in Fernando Hierro’s first decision to play Nacho at right back appeared to have back-fired when he gave away an early penalty on Real Madrid team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo converted the kick himself, but midway through the first half Diego Costa battled through to make it all square, and Isco rattled the crossbar just two minutes later. With half time approaching Ronaldo restore the lead with a long shot which De Gea let through his hands, but within fifteen minutes of the restart Spain were in front, Costa turning in Busquets’ headed pass, and Nacho making up for his penalty mistake with an impressive shot in off the far post. Ronaldo saved the day for Portugal however, completing his hat-trick with a direct free kick with three minutes to go, and in the end both coaches settled for the draw. (15.06.18)