Fernandes unleashed! Portugal winners, losers and ratings as Man Utd star makes up for Ronaldo disasterclass


Winner: Bruno Fernandes

What a performance! Truly unleashed by the midfield duo behind him, Fernandes roamed to all the right spots with Portugal in possession, posing constant danger with his movement and passing vision.

Ronaldo wasted two would-be assists in the first half, but no worries, Fernandes scored himself after a dart towards goal that Mario Rui picked out with a well-timed cross and contributed to the build-up on Dalot’s opener, before assisting him for another goal in the second half.

Winner: Diogo Dalot

A second strong showing from a Manchester United player here, and one that cements his place as a starting line-up contender who could allow Joao Cancelo to play on the left side.

Dalot did the hard work on his first goal, carrying the ball from the midfield into the attacking third before making a smart run into the box to finish Leao’s cut-back pass. His second strike was even better. He dribbled neatly in traffic onto his left foot and swung a long shot around the goalkeeper.

Portugal’s big hope at the World Cup is for their individual dynamism to create chances against even the strongest of defences. Dalot has been overlooked as a player who can contribute to those moments of magic, but he’s demonstrated he has that ability in him.

Winner: Rafael Leao

Getting the start was a big confidence lift, and he didn’t let his manager down.

Leao is in a tough fight for a starting spot in the attack, battling Diogo Jota for the position and perhaps behind in the pecking order entering Saturday’s match. He made a decent argument that he deserves the role – even though he is still without a senior goal in his Portugal career.

The AC Milan star sent Fernandes into open space with a nice first-half pass, the move ultimately leading to a goalscoring chance for Ronaldo. He then assisted Dalot after a sprint to collect the ball before it rolled past the byline.

Yes, he was sloppy at times, and yes, Jota did score off the bench. But Leao looks better now than he did at the very start of his career under Santos, and his manager clearly wants to give him every opportunity to succeed.



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