Portugal’s 3-1 win over Luxemburg lifted catapulted it to the top of Group A in its World Cup qualifying campaign. With seven points in hand, Portugal now stands at level with Serbia, but Luxemburg has to contend at third position with three points.
But Fernando Santos wasn’t satisfied with his team’s performance….
While the Portuguese team was celebrating their victory, their coach Santos was chiding his boys in the media. He said that they wasted the first 30-minutes playing at a walking pace with no intensity on either pitch. And that he had to ask the players that they won’t win the game on quality alone and they had to add intensity to their game.
Santos warned his boys that if they rely on their quality, any opponent could cause them difficulties. He said that in the second half they won every ball. They played with intensity and suddenly found that Luxemburg was a different team.
What made Fernando Santos furious?
Luxemburg was full of confidence after winning 1-0 at Ireland and it soon took lead over the European Champions when Gerson Rodrigues glanced a header at Portugal on the half-hour mark. But Portugal took more time in even equalizing the score.
The first goal for Portugal came in the second minute of the added time of the first half when Diogo Jota sent the ball into Luxemburg’s goalpost. Cristiano Ronaldo came running with Joao Cancelo to score the second goal in the 50th minute of the game. And the final goal was scored by substitute Joao Palhinha in the 80th minute.