Morocco coach Herve Renard: It will be very difficult to stop Cristiano Ronaldo

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The Atlas Lions face a tough task to get out of Group B and must beat European champions Portugal to stand a chance

Morroco coach Herve Renard has admitted that he is struggling for a plan to contain striker Cristiano Ronaldo on Wednesday.

The North Africans will take on Portugal at the Luzhniki Stadium and face a tough task to get out of Group B at the World Cup, having lost their opener 1-0 to Iran.

The 33-year-old Ronaldo became the oldest player to score a hat-trick in the tournament in his side's opening 3-3 draw with Spain, drawing level with Ferenc Puskas as Europe's most prolific international goal scorer on 84 in the process.

Renard has now admitted that it will be tricky to come up with a plan to deal with not only him (Ronaldo), but the rest of Portugal's talented front line.

“Even if you conjure up the best plans to halt Ronaldo, he will find a way to break free. He always makes the difference, at the minimum to put his side on the right track and at best to win the game for them,” Renard told a press conference on Tuesday.

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“Those who try to mount a plan against him, he always manages to find something to make the difference. He's an exceptional player. The word may not even be strong enough, but we must do everything to make it less exceptional.

“If we put three on Ronaldo, they have so much offensive quality. If it only happens once in our lives to play Cristiano Ronaldo, you have to be the best you can.”

Morocco’s 1-0 defeat by Iran has put them under pressure to secure a positive result and revive their chances of progressing to the knockout stages.

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