The Republic of Ireland put up an impressive display to restrict Portugal to one of the low-scoring football results of the weekend in World Cup Qualifying. The draw meant that Portugal will now face Serbia in a winner takes all clash for an automatic qualification spot. The visitors dominated the first half but failed to make use of their dominance. Ronaldo had the best chance in the second half when he headed a cross wide from Andre Silva. Their hopes of securing all three points faded when Pepe received his marching orders after two bookable offences in the second half.
Republic of Ireland: Bazunu (6), Coleman (8), Duffy (7), Egan (7), Doherty (7), Hendrick (8), Cullen (6), Stevens (7), McGrath (6), Ogbene (8) Robinson.
Subs: Idah (6), McClean (n/a), Hourihane (n/a), Keane (n/a).
Portugal: Patricio (7), Semedo (7), Pepe (5), Danilo (5), Dalot (6); Nunes (6), Palhinha (6), Fernandes (5); Guedes (6), Silva (6), Ronaldo (6).
Subs: Leao (5), Moutinho (6), Felix (n/a), Sanches (n/a), Fonte (n/a).
Man of the match: Callum Robinson.
Republic of Ireland forward Callum Robinson: “Winning is the main thing, but this has proven how far we have come as a group to compete against the top, the very best and we did a great job on him [Cristiano Ronaldo]. We had a few half-chances, but it was not to be. It was a game that proved we’re going in the right direction.”
Republic of Ireland defender Shane Duffy, who won his 50th cap against Portugal: “I thought we performed really well. It’s more progress from the team and we’re a little bit disappointed we didn’t win, it was a real gutsy performance.”
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