Portugal beat Croatia with Ricardo Quaresma goal in extra time

 
















Ricardo Quaresma

Ricardo Quaresma scored in extra time as Portugal defeated Croatia 1-0 to advance to the quarterfinals at Euro 2016.
The game was a cagey affair in which neither team put a shot on target in regulation time and Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo did not line up a single attempt until setting up the game-winning goal in the 117th minute.
Moments after Croatia hit the post at the other end of the pitch, Portugal struck on the counter-attack, and keeper Danijel Subasic could only parry Ronaldo's shot into Quaresma's path.
Croatia controlled the ball in the early stages but rarely pushed forward, and although Portugal gained a foothold after 15 minutes, they were equally tentative.
The best chance of the first half came in the 25th minute after Ronaldo was fouled on the wing. Raphael Guerreiro sent in a well-placed cross from the free kick, but Pepe's powerful header sailed over the bar.
Eight minutes later, Portugal defender Jose Fonte was whistled for a foul -- and may have escaped with a stamp -- on Ivan Rakitic. Croatia then worked the ball for a corner, from which Mario Mandzukic sent a header well wide of the net.
Croatia were livelier after half-time, though, and nearly took the lead on 52 minutes when Marcelo Brozovic barely missed getting a head to Ivan Strinic's dangerous cross, and Portugal put it out for a corner.
The defence was caught napping, however, and as Croatia quickly took the corner, Brozovic's shot from 12 yards sailed off-target.
Renato Sanches came on for Andre Gomes early in the second half and sparked some life into Portgual, lashing a 20-yard shot wide after a well-worked one-two with Joao Mario.
After the hour-mark, Croatia had another opportunity from a free kick, but Darijo Srna headed wide and seemed to take the chance away from Mandzukic, who was well-positioned behind him.
Portugal had a penalty shout in the 64th minute when Nani got in behind the Croatia defence and was kicked from behind by Strinic, but the ball had already gone out of play off the striker's shoulder.

Srna forced Pepe to make an acrobatic clearance in stoppage time, but the game headed to extra time without either team challenging the opposing goalkeeper.
As the extra period began, Ivan Perisic tried to lob Portugal keeper Rui Patricio with a header, but it was too high.
Kalinic then found himself in alone on goal after dispossessing Fonte, but his shot skewed closer to the corner flag than the goal.
Portugal's half-chances mostly came from corners -- to no avail -- with Ronaldo particularly ineffective as he did not touch the ball at all in the first 15 minutes of extra time.
In the second period, Croatia defender Domagoj Vida missed an open net with a clean header after Patricio had tripped following a corner.
Perisic then brought the ball to the byline and a sliding Kalinic came within inches of tapping the ball in. Croatia then put another effort into the box and Perisic's off-balance header went off the bottom of the post.
That's when Portugal broke on the counter-attack, Sanches carrying the ball forward before laying it off to Nani near the corner of the box. The striker took a touch and curled the ball across the box to an open Ronaldo, whose shot was saved.
But the ball bounced up nicely for Quaresma, who could not miss with a header on the goal line, and Portugal took the lead against the run of play, breaking Croatian hearts.
Vida had Croatia's final attempt, but it went inches wide in the 122nd minute, and Portugal advanced to face Poland in the quarterfinals on Thursday in Marseille.

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