Portugal beat Slovakia 2-0

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:52 IST

Portugal took the sole lead at the top of the Group-3 standings after they beat Slovakia 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier in Lisbon on Saturday.

Portugal beat Slovakia 2-0

Lisbon:

Portugal took the sole lead at the top of the Group-3 standings after they beat Slovakia 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier in Lisbon on Saturday. Beaten Euro 2004 finalists Portugal looked to make a quick breakthrough and Deco's shot from distance gave Slovakia goalkeeper Kamil Contofalsky an early test. But Slovakia should have taken the lead in the 17th minute. Portugal goalkeeper Ricardo reacted well to stop a goalbound volley, only for the ball to fall for Marek Mintal. Firing wide He fired wide with the goal at his mercy though as his coach Dusan Galis looked on in horror. Portugal punished that missed opportunity four minutes later to take a 1-0 lead. The slightest of headers at the near post unsettled Slovakia's defence and Fernando Meira finished off from inside the six-yard box. Cristiano Ronaldo then tried his luck from distance as the half wore on. The Manchester United midfielder hit a swerving shot from 25-yards out, but Contofalsky pushed the ball wide of the target. Free kick However, Ronaldo was not to be denied four minutes before half-time. His long-range free kick fizzed past Contofalsky and Portugal led 2-0 at the break. Pauleta had a fine chance to further cushion Portugal's lead in the second half. He shot straight at Contofalsky after a clever back heel from Ronaldo though and Portugal held on to win 2-0. They now hold a three-point lead at the top of the Group-3 standings, with Slovakia and Russian in their wake. (AP)

Topics : Football Portugal
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