Suarez vs. Ronaldo subplot of Uruguay-Portugal Round of 16 showdown

Portugal

Earlier that day, Lionel Messi departed after France knocked out Argentina 4-3 in Round of 16 match.

Messi left wondering on the world stage again.

In the second half, Portugal was able to answer with a corner kick header from Pepe to tie things up and give Uruguay their first goal against since November 2017.

The Uruguayan defense allowed its first goal of the World Cup, but Edinson Cavani scored twice to power Uruguay to the quarterfinals.

That doesn't sound like a player who is ready to give up on what has been a life-long World Cup dream and Ronaldo insisted he has enjoyed Russian Federation 2018 despite the outcome for his team.

In reaching the Round of 16, Portugal have improved on their showing at the 2014 World Cup where they were eliminated at the group stages.

The Argentina fans were now in full voice but their joy did not last long before France restored parity after 57 minutes, Pavard pouncing on an over-cooked cross some 20 metres out and lashing it on the half-volley into the net.

That was the first goal the twice World Cup champions had conceded in the tournament in Russian Federation, but it took Cavani only seven minutes to put them back ahead at the packed Fisht Stadium overlooking the Black Sea.

Ronaldo was involved somewhat in Portugal's goal, even if he didn't come close to getting a touch on the cross.

EARLY GOAL It was a five-pass build-up from deep in its own end that culminated in Uruguay's first goal, and the final two passes were flawless. It was Cavani who floated a cross-field ball to Suarez on the opposite flank before sprinting to the far post. Just a few steps inside Portugal's half, Cavani hit Suarez with a pinpoint cross over the top of the back line, and immediately made a run behind the Portuguese defense. Suarez makes a brilliant cross from the left for Cavani to head the ball past the goalkeeper. KEYS TO THE GAME Stopping Ronaldo.

For all of Portugal's endeavour for an equaliser, Uruguay showed standout organisation to silence the Iberians and they nearly doubled their lead, Suarez forcing a smart reaction save from Patricio, who dived late to palm away the forward's free kick from the bottom corner.

And as he limped off the pitch, he was given a helping hand courtesy of Portugal's captain.

Uruguay 2 (Edinson Cavani 7', 62') Portugal 1 (Pepe 55'). With the help of a red card and an own goal, Uruguay wrapped up group play with a 3-0 rout of host Russian Federation, taking the group with nine points.

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