Belgium 1-2 Portugal


Portugal kept its Euro 2008 dreams alive with a 2-1 victory over Belgium in their qualifying match at the stadium on Saturday.


Luiz Felipe Scolari's men needed the victory in order to keep pressure on group leaders Poland as well as third placed Serbia as the teams lock horns in the battle to qualify from the group to the Euro 2008 finals next year.


The first chance of the match fell to Portugal's Helder Postiga who latched on to a great cross from Nani, only for Belgium keeper Stijn Stijnen to tip the effort wide. Portugal continued to press forwards and Armando Petit, Nani, Ricardo Quaresma and Postiga were guilty of not hitting the target.


Meanwhile Emile Mpenza and Steven Defour saw their shots go straight into the arms of Portugal keeper Ricardo. Portugal finally took the lead through Nani in the 43rd minute, sending the 19-year old into flips to celebrate his goal.


Nani, who has agreed a move to Manchester United, cut in from the left wing and drilled his shot low towards the goal. Though Stijnen managed to get his fingertips on the ball, he was unable to keep it from rolling into the net.


Belgium came out into the second half in an attacking mood and Ricardo had to be alert to save a shot from Francois Sterchele. However the home side equalized in the 55th miute when Marouane Fellaini headed home a Defour cross from the right hand side.


But Belgium were unable to prevent Portugal from taking the lead in the 64th minute when Postiga hit a thunderous long range shot from 20 yards out to reassert his team's lead in the match. And even though Portugal were reduced to ten men when Hugo Almeida was sent off in the final minute of play, Scolari's men held on to the lead to give themselves a great chance of qualifying from the group. Belgium v Portugal finished with a narrow away win for Scolari’s side.

Tags: Portugal, Euro 2008 finals, Belgium, Nani, Manchester United, Belgium v Portugal


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