Portugal: Ricardo; Miguel, Carvalho, Andrade, Nuno
Valente; Maniche, Costinha; Cristian Ronaldo (Couto 85'), Deco, Figo (Petit
78'); Pauleta (Nuno Gomes 46'). 4-2-3-1.
Spain: Casillas; Puyol, Juanito (Morientes 80'), Iván Helguera, Raúl Bravo; Albelda (Baraja 65'), Xabi Alonso; Joaquín (Luque 72'), Raúl, Vicente; Fernando Torres. 4-2-3-1.
1-0. 57. Nuno Gomes. Struck shot on the turn past Casillas from edge of area.
Spain are out of the European championship! A 1-0 defeat at the hands of hosts Portugal left them in third place in their group, and they will be taking no further part in the tournament. Iñaki Sáez's side needed to draw their last group match to go through, although a narrow defeat would have been enough had Greece lost their game to Russia by a bigger margin.
The manager decided to make four changes for this game, most of which were forced upon him by suspension or injury, with Juanito, Xabi Alonso, Joaquín and Fernando Torres all in the starting line up. There were many familiar faces on the other side, not least of which their captain Figo, who exchanged pennants with his Real Madrid team mate Raúl before kick off.
When news came through that Russia were two up in the first ten minutes there appeared to be no danger of Spain going out. But they showed little initiative in a dull first half, with only a couple of half chances falling to Fernando Torres, and Portugal could have gone ahead had Ronaldo not steered a header wide just before the break. And reports that Greece had pulled a goal back did nothing for the fans' nerves at the interval.
With his side needing a win to stay in the competition, Portugal manager Scolari surprised everyone taking off his sole striker Pauleta at the break to bring on Nuno Gomes. But it proved to be a decisive move, the new front man getting what was to be the only goal of the match with just under an hour on the clock after picking up Figo's pass and making himself space to shoot low past Casillas. Spain could have equalised soon afterwards, Raúl heading wide after Ricardo misjudged Vicente's cross and Fernando Torres hitting the post after Xabi Alonso put him through. But Casillas had to be at his best to keep out Figo's free kick, and then block Costinha's header from the resulting corner.
Clearly Sáez had to make the changes, but with so much attacking talent on the bench, Sáez inexplicably brought on Baraja for Albelda. A few minutes later Luque came on for the limping Joaquín, and should have done better when Torres put him through, Carvalho heading his soft cross away behind the posts. Juanito sent a header onto the bar from a wide angle from the resulting corner, and Vicnete shot just wide with another effort moments later. And with ten minutes to go the manager finally brought on Morientes for Juanito as Spain continued to push forward.
Scolari though decided to defend the lead, and brought on Petit for Figo and then Couto for Ronaldo. Even so they were dangerous on the breakaway, and Portugal could well have scored a second goal, Costinha somehow heading wide with the goal at his mercy and Raúl Bravo clearing an effort from Maniche off the line with Casillas beaten. But the hosts had done enough to record their first ever win against their neighbours in an official competition, and their name goes through to the last eight and not Spain's.
After the match the Spanish Federation confirmed Sáez in the post of manager, having signed a new contract only a couple of weeks ago to take him through to the World Cup. But with the press almost unanimous in blaming the manager for the elimination, there will be enormous pressure for him to go.