Euro 2020: Defending champions Portugal clash against world number one Belgium

Cristiano Ronaldo is now Euro 2020 top scorer with five strikes, two more than any of the closest challengers and he will be looking to break the world record for most international goals.

Portugal are the defending Champions and Belgium will be looking to eliminate them in the round-16, Image credit: Twitter

World Number 1 Belgium looked worthy of that title during a perfect group stage run, with Romelu Lukaku in fine form with three goals. The Portuguese have looked equally potent in attack, with Cristiano Ronaldo boasting five goals and an assist after three games, but worrisome at the back.

Belgium and Portugal lock horns on Monday at the Estadio La Cartuja in Seville, Spain.

This will be the first time ever these two nations meet at a major tournament (Euro/World Cup). Portugal haven’t lost to Belgium in their previous five meetings (3 wins and 2 draws).

Belgium earned all nine points available to it during the group stages. A 3-0 win against Russia which included a Romelu Lukaku brace helped them start their campaign. Although Denmark was threating in the second match, the introduction Kevin De Bruyne in the second half settled the matter. Lukaku scored his third goal of the tournament in their third match against Finland to seal the deal. They will be confident that they can beat any team on their day, after all they are Number 1 nation in the world.

CRISTIANO RONALDO IS AGEING LIKE FINE WINE

The last matchday of the group stages really summed up why Group F was called the Group of Death. Portugal recorded a 2-2 draw when facing France on Wednesday, which was enough to see the team through to the knock-out phase of Euro 2020. Hats off to Hungary for a two-point draw with France and Germany. Portugal has already faced two of the strongest teams in the competition. They will be ready hoping their experience can surpass the Belgian Golden Generation. 

Cristiano Ronaldo will be on his toes as he prepares to set another record. Cristiano scored both of Portugal’s two goals from the penalty spot and equalized Ali Daei record of 109 international goals. He is now Euro 2020 top scorer with five strikes, two more than any of the closest challengers.

Belgium and Portugal are among the favourites to win the tournament. For the rest of the pack, this match will help eliminate a big name from the campaign. Both Belgium and Portugal will be eyeing the trophy, making this an electrifying matchup.

PREDICTED STARTING XI:

Belgium XI (3-4-3): Courtois; Alderweireld, Denayer, Vertonghen; Meunier, Tielemans, Witsel, T. Hazard; Mertens, Lukaku, E. Hazard

Portugal XI (4-3-3): Rui Patricio; Semedo, Dias, Pepe, Guerreiro; Palhinha, Sanches, Moutinho; Bernardo, Ronaldo, Jota




WRITTEN BY
Sportslumo Desk

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