News Matches

Portugal v Ghana Live Commentary, 25/11/2022

FT
3 - 2
POR
GHA
Cristiano Ronaldo (65 pen)
João Félix (78)
Rafael Leão (80)
A. Ayew (73)
O. Bukari (89)
Stadium 974

Commentary

Thanks for joining our commentary today. Until next time, goodbye.
Portugal are next in action against Uruguay on Monday, while Ghana take on South Korea on the same day.
Portugal get off the mark at the World Cup with a dramatic 3-2 victory over Ghana at the 974 Stadium. After a goalless first half, Cristiano Ronaldo opened the scoring with a controversial penalty to become the first man to score at five World Cups. Andre Ayew equalised for the Black Stars, but Joao Felix and Rafael Leao scored their first World Cup goals to put the Selecao in command. Osman Bukari made it a tense finish with a close-range header and Diogo Costa almost handed Inaki Williams a stoppage-time equaliser only for the forward to slip at the vital moment. Fernando Santos' men held on to secure the three points to get up and running in Group H.
90' + 11' FULL-TIME: PORTUGAL 3-2 GHANA
90' + 10' SCRAMBLE! Crazy from Costa as he drops the ball at his feet and allows Williams to steal possession. The forward gets to the ball, but he slips and allows Dias and Pereira to race back to clear the danger before Williams can pounce again. Drama at the death.
90' + 10' Kyereh raids down the left flank and floats a cross into the box that Costa claims ahead of Bukari.
90' + 8' WIDE! Bukari cuts inside from the left flank and curls a dangerous strike on his right foot towards goal, but he clips the side-netting with his effort. Costa was concerned for a moment.
90' + 7' Amartey brings down Leao on the left flank, but Ati-Zigi is alert to punch the resulting cross from Fernandes away from danger.
Bruno Fernandes
Yellow Card
Portugal
90' + 5' Fernandes pulls back Bukari and goes into the book.
90' + 4' Leao makes a charge forward down the left flank, but he fails to fire at goal or find a team-mate as he loses possession to Amartey.
D. Kyereh
A. Djiku
Ghana
90' + 2' Substitution Alexander Kwabena Baidoo Djiku Daniel-Kofi Kyereh
A. Semenyo
S. Abdul Samed
Ghana
90' + 2' An attacking change from Ghana as Djiku is withdrawn for Semenyo.
I. Williams
Yellow Card
Ghana
90' + 1' Williams lashes out at Pereira, who prevents him getting to his feet. Pereira makes the most of the contact, but Williams still gets booked.
Danilo Pereira
Yellow Card
Portugal
90' + 1' Pereira goes into the book for bringing down Williams on the halfway line.
90' There will be nine minutes of added time.
O. Bukari
Goal
Ghana
89' GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!! BUKARI GETS ANOTHER ONE BACK FOR GHANA!!!!!! 3-2!!! The Black Stars are not out of this game yet as Bukari steers home a header into the top-right corner. Rahman runs down the left flank and gets the better of Cancelo before he lifts a cross to the back post. It takes a deflection to reach Bukari and he makes no mistake with a perfect header to beat Costa.
João Mário
João Félix
Portugal
88' Joao Mario is on Joao Felix for the closing stages of the contest.
Gonçalo Ramos
Cristiano Ronaldo
Portugal
88' Ramos replaces Ronaldo after his goalscoring performance this evening.
João Palhinha
Bernardo Silva
Portugal
88' Palhinha replaces Silva in the middle of the park for the Selecao.
86' Joao Felix is back on his feet and is fine to continue after being caught in the face.
85' Joao Felix tries to break in behind the Ghana defence down the right flank again. However, Salisu gets back to win the ball, but does catch the forward with a stray arm, which sends Joao Felix to the deck.
84' Two Portugal players have scored on their world Cup debuts (Joao Felix and Rafael Leao) for just the second time, after Jose Torres and Jose Augusto against Hungary in 1966.
83' OFFSIDE! Cancelo threads a pass through to Ronaldo to send him on his way to goal. However, Ati-Zigi makes a brilliant stop to deny the forward as he attempts a clip over the keeper. The offside flag goes up late anyway, but Ati-Zigi didn't know.
82' Felix scored his first goal in 12 games for Portugal, since scoring against Croatia in November 2020.
Bruno Fernandes
Assist
Portugal
80' Fernandes drives forward from the middle of the park before releasing a perfect pass to find Leao in the inside-left channel to score.
Rafael Leão
Goal
Portugal
80' GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!! LEAO STEERS HOME A STRIKE!!!!!! 3-1 PORTUGAL!!!! Portugal take command of the game as Leao curls home a fine strike from the inside-left channel for his first international goal. Fernandes times his offload to perfection to release Leao in space. The forward takes the effort on first-time and guides it away from Ati-Zigi into the bottom-right corner.
Bruno Fernandes
Assist
Portugal
78' Fernandes places a perfect offload behind the Ghana defence down the right flank to find Joao Felix in stride before the forward applies the finish.
João Félix
Goal
Portugal
78' GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!! JOAO FELIX RESTORES PORTUGAL'S LEAD!!!!! 2-1!!!!!! The Selecao regain the lead as Joao Felix races on to a throughball and slots his effort over Ati-Zigi into the net. Fernandes threads the needle to release Joao Felix in the inside-right channel. The forward still has work to do, but he guides his strike past the on-rushing keeper to put his team back in front. A cool finish from Joao Felix.
Rafael Leão
Rúben Neves
Portugal
77' Leao enters the action for the Selecao to replace Neves.
J. Ayew
A. Ayew
Ghana
77' The goalscorer Andre Ayew also makes way for the Black Stars as he is replaced by his brother Jordan Ayew.
O. Bukari
M. Kudus
Ghana
77' After creating the Ghana equaliser, Kudus makes way for the Black Stars and is replaced by Bukari.
75' Ayew is now Ghana's second-top scorer at the World Cup (three), behind Asamoah Gyan (six)
A. Ayew
Goal
Ghana
73' GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!! AYEW POKES HOME AN EQUALISER!!!! 1-1!!!! Ghana are back in the game as Ayew converts from close range. Kudus makes a great run behind the Portugal defence down the inside-left channel. He puts in a sublime low cross into the middle that Ayew attacks and steers home with his right boot in the six-yard area. Game on.
72' SAVE! Partey works the ball to Kudus to line up a strike at goal from 20 yards on his left foot. The ball zips towards the target, but Costa watches it all the way to make the stop before gathering at the second attempt.
71' Amartey has to be alert at the back to prevent Joao Felix from latching on to an offload from Ronaldo on the left flank.
70' Ghana need to change their approach now. They will feel aggrieved because the penalty was soft at best, but they need to get on the front foot to find an equaliser.
69' Ronaldo is the first player to score a penalty at three different World Cups.
68' Ronaldo is the second oldest player to score at the World Cup (37 years, 292 days), behind only Roger Milla in 1994 for Cameroon (42 years, 39 days). He's the oldest to score for a European nation, overtaking Sweden's Gunnar Gren (37 years, 236 days) in 1958.
67' Williams looks to find space for a strike and he launches an effort at goal from 20 yards that deflects off Pereira and into the hands of Costa.
T. Lamptey
A. Seidu
Ghana
66' Lamptey replaces Seidu at the back for the Black Stars. Seidu was very close to being sent off earlier.
Cristiano Ronaldo
Penalty Goal
Portugal
65' GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!! RONALDO FIRES PORTUGAL AHEAD!!!! 1-0!!!! The forward holds his composure from the penalty spot as he hammers his right-footed strike up and above Ati-Zigi's dive and into the back of the net. You can never keep Ronaldo down for long as he becomes the first man to score a five World Cups.
62' PENALTY TO PORTUGAL! Ronaldo is brought down by Salisu in the penalty area and the referee points to the spot. Portugal and Ronaldo will have a huge chance here.
60' Djiku gives the ball away to Silva on the edge of his own box, but the midfielder cannot find an option for a quick offload and it allows Ghana to get men back.
59' Seidu gets a strong talking to by the referee. He is perhaps fortunate to remain on the field after almost headbutting the Portugal forward.
A. Seidu
Yellow Card
Ghana
57' Seidu goes into the book for charging in late on Joao Felix. The two players have a little confrontation after the fact, which the referee has to bring under control.
William Carvalho
Otávio
Portugal
56' Otavio has picked up a knock, which may have been from the challenge by Ayew. Carvalho replaces him in the Portugal midfield.
55' CLOSE! Ronaldo sees an effort blocked after collecting in space in the Ghana box. The Black Stars break on the counter through Kudus and he raids all the way to the edge of the Portugal penalty area before placing a left-footed strike just wide of the right post.
53' WIDE! Seidu latches on to a loose ball on the edge of the box and swings his boot towards it, but he sends his effort comfortably wide of the target.
52' Cancelo has space and time down the right flank to deliver a cross, but he stops and loses possession. It allows Ghana to break down the left flank and Kudus wins a corner for the Black Stars.
50' Samed tries to release Ayew behind Dias in the Portugal half, but the forward moves a fraction too early and is caught offside.
A. Ayew
Yellow Card
Ghana
49' Otavio turns away from Ayew and is brought down by the Ghana skipper. Ayew goes into the book for his challenge.
46' We're back under way at Stadium 974.
The Black Stars have been comfortable in their shape at the back. They've not offered a lot going forward and perhaps have been a tad negative in their approach. Otto Addo will be satisfied and will be urging his side to keep it tight before becoming more adventurous late in the second half.
It's goalless at the break between Portugal and Ghana in their World Cup clash at Stadium 974. The best chances of the game have fallen to Cristiano Ronaldo, but he has failed to find the back of the net. He was denied by a good save from Lawrence Ati-Zigi before spurning a glorious opening, heading wide of the post from close range. Portugal have dominated the game, but have lacked the cutting edge in the final third to make it count on the scoresheet.
45' + 2' HALF-TIME: PORTUGAL 0-0 GHANA
M. Kudus
Yellow Card
Ghana
45' Kudus catches Cancelo with a high boot battling for possession and goes into the book.
45' There will be two minutes of added time.
44' Cancelo sends Otavio down the right flank and he has options in the middle, only to slice his cross from the byline out for a goal-kick.
42' Portugal keep the pressure on and Cancelo's deep cross is kept alive by Joao Felix, but Ronaldo is slow to react to the cutback. Joao Felix fouls Amartey as he attempts to win posssession in the Ghana box.
41' CHANCE! Ronaldo goes for the give-and-go with Guerreiro and has space for a strike, but he sees his low blast blocked by Amartey.
38' Portugal have to defend a series of corners from the Black Stars. The ball is cleared as far as Seidu on the edge of the box, but he scuffs his effort into the ground before the Selecao regain possession.
36' Fernandes works the ball to Otavio 20 yards from goal and he turns to fire with a low strike. However, his shot is tame and straight at Ati-Zigi.
35' Ghana are yet to have an attempt at goal or a touch in the Portugal box. Only once previously since records began (1966) has a side failed to have a shot or a touch in the opposition box in the first half of a World Cup match (Saudi Arabia against France in 1998).
33' Cancelo whips a dangerous delivery into the Ghana box from the right flank, but the Black Stars hold their composure to clear through Salisu with an important header.
31' DISALLOWED GOAL! Ronaldo fends off Djiku as he tries to latch onto Joao Felix's pass. He collects the ball and then fires a brilliant strike past Ati-Zigi, but the referee blows for a foul.
28' CHANCE! Silva collects a deep cross from Cancelo on the left flank and steers a low pass back into the feet of Joao Felix. He shoots on the turn on his left foot, but slices his attempt wide of the target.
27' Otavio wins the ball in the Ghana half from Kudus and feeds Guerreiro on the left flank, but he sees his cross diverted away by a good defensive header from Amartey.
25' Cancelo floats a dangerous ball over the top of the Ghana defence for Fernandes' run. However, it proves to be just too long for the midfielder to reach in the six-yard box.
23' Joao Felix collects on the left flank and tries to angle a cross towards Ronaldo, only for the ball to drift away from the forward and behind for a goal-kick.
22' Kudus tries to release Williams through on goal on the break, but he misplaces his offload fractionally and allows Dias to get across the forward to clear the danger.
19' Portugal are seeing a lot of possession in the Ghana half as the Black Stars seem very comfortable allowing Santos' men to have possession.
17' Cancelo finds space down the right flank and he angles a cross towards Ronaldo, but the delivery is cleared by Salisu.
15' Otavio loses out to Kudus in the Ghana half and Ayew goes down under pressure from Neves as he looks for a way out.
13' WIDE! Ronaldo rises from the resulting corner from Guerreiro on the left flank. He powers above his marker, but sends his glancing header wide of the right post. We've seen him score those type of headers before.
13' Fernandes works a sublime offload towards Guerreiro in the inside-left channel, but he sees his cross deflected behind by Djiku.
10' CHANCE! Kudus loses possession in the middle of the park and Silva releases Ronaldo through on goal. Ati-Zigi races off his line and spreads himself to make a save from Ronaldo's effort on the stretch. A fine stop from the Ghana keeper.
8' Ayew puts Pereira under pressure at the back, but the defender does enough to turn away from pressure and clear his lines.
6' Neves robs Kudus of possession on the edge of the Ghana box, but he sees his effort charged down by Amartey.
5' WIDE! Guerreiro's corner is cleared as far as Otavio on the edge of the box, but he drags his first-time strike on the half-volley harmlessly wide of the left post.
4' Guerreiro finds space down the left flank and he looks for a cross into the box that is deflected behind for a corner by Seidu.
3' Portugal are attempting to get their foot on the ball in the early stages of the game, although it's mostly being knocked between Dias and Pereira.
1' We're under way at Stadium 974.
Portugal and Ghana’s only previous encounter was in the group stages of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Portugal won 2-1, with a Ronaldo winning goal.
Ghana have made four changes to their side that defeated Switzerland in their final warm-up match. Djiku, Partey, Seidu and Kudus all come into the fold today as Afriyie, Lamptey, Owusu and Jordan Ayew drop to the bench.
Fernando Santos has made six changes to his side that defeated Nigeria in Portugal's final warm-up game. Costa gets the nod ahead of Patricio between the posts, while Cancelo, Pereira and Guerreiro join Dias in the backline. Neves and Ronaldo come into the side in the middle of the park and the final third respectively. Dalot, Andre Silva, Carvalho, Antonio Silva and Patricio drop to the bench, while Nuno Mendes is ruled due to injury.
GHANA SUBS: Tariq Lamptey, Denis Odoi, Elisha Owusu, Adbul Issahaku, Daniel-Kofi Kyereh, Jordan Ayew, Osman Bukari, Ibrahim Danlad, Daniel Afriyie, Gideon Mensah, Joseph Aidoo, Abdul Nurudeen, Kamaldeen Sulemana, Kamal Sowah, Antoine Semenyo.
GHANA (5-4-1): Lawrence Ati-Zigi; Alidu Seidu, Daniel Amartey, Alexander Djiku, Mohammed Salisu, Abdul-Rahman Baba; Mohammed Kudus, Thomas Partey, Salis Abdul Samed, Andre Ayew; Inaki Williams.
PORTUGAL SUBS: Rui Patricio, Diogo Dalot, Pepe, Joao Palhinha, Andre Silva, Jose Sa, William Carvalho, Rafael Leao, Vitinha, Joao Mario, Ricardo Horta, Matheus Nunes, Antonio Silva, Goncalo Ramos.
PORTUGAL (4-3-3): Diogo Costa; Joao Cancelo, Danilo Pereira, Ruben Dias, Raphael Guerreiro; Ruben Neves, Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes; Otavio, Joao Felix, Cristiano Ronaldo.
Ghana were embarrassed at their last appearance at a major tournament after finishing bottom of their group in the Africa Cup of Nations earlier this year. The Black Stars even lost out to Comoros in the tournament, leaving them with a point to prove on the international stage. Otto Addo was appointed in the aftermath and has a challenge to help his team compete in the World Cup. Their form has been solid ahead of the tournament, defeating Switzerland in their final warm-up game, but few people are expecting them to progress into the knockout stage.
Portugal's key man Cristiano Ronaldo has been in the headlines before his World Cup campaign has even started following his release by Manchester United. He is now the only player in the World Cup to not represent a club side. Ronaldo has received his fair share of criticism for a recent interview, and it will be interesting to see how he performs here and over the competition. Portugal themsevles will be bidding to reach the knockout stage for the sixth tournament in a row. Their form against quality opponents has been up and down over the last few years, but the Selecao will be eager to start off on the front foot.
Hello and welcome to the live commentary of the World Cup clash between Portugal and Ghana at Stadium 974.