Ronaldo can't drive Portugal to WC glory

Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo

Edinson Cavani, who failed to finish the match after suffering a late injury, scored a superb goal in each half, and although Pepe scored in-between, it was not enough to halt the Uruguayans, who have now won all four of their matches so far in Russian Federation.

Yet despite his brilliance - and some talented teammates - Argentina have remained without such a trophy - losing to Germany in the 2010 World Cup quarterfinals and suffering the same fate in the 2014 final in Rio.

With four goals scored after just two World Cup matches, Ronaldo was one of only a few soccer players seen as capable of winning the 2018 Golden Boot - the prize given to the top goalscorer.

Barcelona forward Messi, 31, has also never scored in the World Cup knockout stages and is reportedly considering his own global future. Messi on the other hand only managed one. In my opinion Portugal played better than Uruguay, we had some opportunities, but that is what football's about: "who scores more goals wins, so that is why Uruguay is to be congratulated".

"Up until yesterday I think people were saying, 'Well, Uruguay won the group stage but the group was easy.' Well, I don't think Portugal is easy", Tabarez said.

The Real Madrid forward, who is now 33, helped his nation progress from their group and set up a tie with Uruguay in the last-16 of the tournament. The Barcelona forward held the ball for a moment as Cavani powered into the area before whipping in a cross for his strike partner to head home.

More news: Umtiti reveals difference between Messi at Barcelona, Argentina

There was no goal from Ronaldo this time.

"We gave our best", Ronaldo said. Cavani opened the scoring just seven minutes into the keenly-fought contest when he finished off a stunning cross-field one-two with Luis Suarez. "A group that has a big ambition to triumph and that is why I am happy about everything".

Portugal head coach Fernando Santos, however, hopes Ronaldo will continue to feature for the national side as he can help in the development of the country's next generation.

There is always competition to earn a place in the team, but things are easier "when they have given you the rules and everything is done based on our sacred word. which is respect". The end result was that Ronaldo rarely got the space he needed to generate speed and could never pose a threat to a side who till this game had not conceded a goal.

"Now we have a very strong opponent in France", Tabarez said.

During Portugal's four matches he showed flashes of his brilliance but was often restricted to foraging on the flanks or denied a clear shot at goal when he cut inside.

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