Fernando Santos refused to supply Cristiano Ronaldo a transparent direction again into his beginning lineup after shedding him for Portugal’s scintillating 6-1 win over Switzerland, announcing the topic have been closed however suggesting his long term position is up within the air.
Portugal performed with freedom and bold towards combatants who may just now not take care of their assault. The 21-year-old Benfica striker Goncalo Ramos changed Ronaldo, who had frustrated Santos together with his response to being substituted throughout Friday’s defeat through South Korea, and promptly scored a hat-trick. It felt a deeply symbolic transfer to ax the rustic’s getting old all-time most sensible scorer for a knockout tie that had regarded onerous to name. Ramos additionally arrange a purpose for Raphaël Guerreiro and can without a doubt be inconceivable to depart out of the quarter-final towards Morocco on Saturday.
Santos emphasised there have been no last problems with Ronaldo however, requested whether or not the 37-year-old must settle for a brand new position within the squad, remained imprecise about his potentialities. “That is still something that has to be defined,” he mentioned. “I have a very close relationship with him, I’ve known him since he was 19 at Sporting. Ronaldo and I never misinterpret the human and personal aspect with that of manager and player. I will always consider that he is a very important player to have in the team.
,[The matter] is something that is finished and solved. It is also important to look at this player’s history, he is one of the best players in the world and therefore all we have to do is come in collectively.”
Santos outlined the difference between the Portugal side that had been built around Ronaldo’s aging legs and the youthful unit that brimmed with vitality on Tuesday night. “We wanted a team that played with a lot of fluidity,” he said. He explained Ramos, who was making his first international start, offered more movement. “Cristiano is more fixed, he stays in a more determined role towards the box,” he said. “Gonçalo has different characteristics: he is very dynamic and that’s what he ended up showing us.”
Asked directly whether Ronaldo would face Morocco, against whom he scored the winner in the 2018 group stage, Santos replied: “All the gamers who’re with me can be utilized and if they aren’t within the beginning XI they may be able to play later.”
The Switzerland manager Murat Yakin was left to rue a fifth last-16 exit in six World Cup appearances. He accepted they had no answer to their rampant opposition. “We must admit our opponent was once higher, quicker and extra offensive within the assault,” he mentioned.