Ronaldo scores twice as Portugal beat Slovakia to clinch EURO qualification

Porto, Portugal, October 14: Five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo’s brace helped Portugal confirm their spot in the upcoming EURO 2024 after beating Slovakia 3-2 at Estadio Do Dragao in Porto on Saturday.

Ronaldo-led Portugal dominated the game from the very first moment of the match after Portuguese striker Goncalo Ramos scored from a fiery header to get the first breakthrough in the 18th minute of the game. Soon after the first goal, the Portuguese football legend wrote his name on the scoresheet after scoring his first goal of the match from the penalty spot.

However, Slovakia made a comeback in the game in the 69th minute when David Hancko scored the first goal for the away side. But the Portuguese skipper kept the two-goal lead after he got the back of the net in the 72nd minute. The 38-year-old had to make an easy finish after Bruno Fernandes kept a low cross into the box, where CR7 was standing.

Stanislav Lobotka netted the second for Slovakia in the 80th minute to make a comeback in the game but failed and lost the match by 3-2.

Portugal stands in the top place of the EURO qualification Group J points table. Meanwhile, Slovakia stands in the second place. On the other hand, France beat the Netherlands 2-0 in Amsterdam to secure Euro 2024 qualification, after French striker Kylian Mbappe scored twice, including a stunning strike from just outside the box. After putting Les Bleus ahead with a seventh-minute finish, Mbappe added a breathtaking second goal in the 53rd minute of the match, exchanging passes with Adrien Rabiot and sending a curling shot outside the box and getting the top corner.

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Netherlands’s Quilindschy Hartman reduced the loss with seven minutes of normal time remaining. After their match against the Netherlands, France stands in first place in Group B with 18 points.

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