DOHA, Qatar (AP) — There will likely be no World Cup title for Cristiano Ronaldo in what was probably his final look at soccer’s greatest event.
After being on the bench at first for the second straight match, Ronaldo couldn’t assist Portugal come again in opposition to Morocco, shedding 1-0 within the quarterfinals on Saturday.
The 37-year-old Ronaldo walked off the sector in tears.
Ronaldo got here on instead early within the second half along with his crew already shedding. He changed midfielder Rúben Neves within the 51st minute for his 196th worldwide males’s look, probably the most of all time together with Kuwait ahead Badr Al-Mutawa.
Ronaldo, enjoying in his fifth and certain last World Cup, had additionally been on the bench to begin within the spherical of 16 in opposition to Switzerland, making an look instead.
Morocco took the lead on Saturday with a header by Youssef En-Nesyri within the forty second minute.
Ronaldo was among the many first substitutions made by Portugal coach Fernando Santos and — after receiving the captain’s armband from defender Pepe — rushed onto the sector and began cheering on his teammates. As time stored working out, he additionally raised his arms towards the Portugal followers — closely outnumbered by the Moroccans — and requested for his or her help.
Ronaldo helped improve the depth of the Portugal assault that had struggled to get previous the well-organized Moroccan protection. He instantly created a chance with a cross into the realm, then misplaced possession shortly afterward. He additionally arrange a shot by João Félix within the 82nd, however his teammate’s strike was saved. Ronaldo’s last-gasp shot in stoppage time additionally was saved.
Ronaldo walked off the sector after the ultimate whistle and began crying by the point he entered the tunnel into the locker rooms.
Some Moroccan gamers had gone to console him, however there have been no Portugal teammates by him as he walked off. Most had stayed on the sector and went towards the Portugal followers to thank them for his or her help.
Santos patted Ronaldo’s again as he handed by him close to the sideline.
Ronaldo had mentioned earlier than the World Cup that he didn’t plan to retire from the Portuguese nationwide crew after the event in Qatar, and that he deliberate to play at the very least on the 2024 European Championship.
He remained with eight World Cup objectives, one shy of Eusébio’s file with Portugal within the event.
Gonçalo Ramos, who scored a hat trick on Tuesday in Portugal’s 6-1 win over Switzerland in his first begin for Portugal, was once more chosen forward of Ronaldo.
Ronaldo was ignored of the lineup in opposition to the Swiss after Santos expressed frustration about his crew captain’s perspective within the earlier sport.
Santos later mentioned Ronaldo was “not joyful” to be advised he was being benched, however by no means threatened to depart the World Cup due to the choice.
Ronaldo, the all-time main scorer in males’s worldwide soccer with 118 objectives, finally got here in as a alternative within the 74th minute. He had appeared considerably disconnected from the remainder of the squad after the match.
Ronaldo was coming off lackluster performances within the group stage, although he scored within the 3-2 win over Ghana to develop into the primary participant to attain in 5 World Cups. He has performed in each version of the event since 2006.
Portugal’s different starters in opposition to Morocco at Al Thumama Stadium included João Félix, Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes and Otávio.
Portugal was attempting to make it to the final 4 for the third time, having completed third in 1966 and fourth in 2006. The crew hadn’t gotten previous the spherical of 16 since that event in Germany 16 years in the past.