Santos shares Portugal's sadness but hopes Ronaldo will remain

Mixed bag Ronaldo scored four goals in the first two matches including a hat-trick against Spain but then missed a crucial penalty against Iran that condemned his side to second place

Uruguay defeated Portugal 2-1 thanks to two goals by Edison Cavani who had to retire due to an injury.

And just like that, he joined Messi in heading out of Russian Federation and out of the World Cup.

Uruguay has gone deep into the World Cup before, even with some of the same players, yet after four straight wins, it's clear there is something more to the group that Oscar Tabarez has brought to Russian Federation.

In his fourth World Cup, Ronaldo couldn't hide his frustration late in the match in Sochi, furiously complaining with the referee after a non-call for a foul that could have given Portugal a last chance to equalize. "I think we played a good game and maybe we deserved more, but in football, the ones that score the most goals win and they scored two, so congratulations", Marca.com quoted Ronaldo, as saying.

Portugal started their Russian Federation campaign strongly with a 3-3 tie over Spain and a 1-0 win over Morocco, but their recent fixture against Iran - which ended 1-1 - was bathed in controversy during the dying seconds as the opposing team was awarded a penalty through VAR. And we didn't have to wait too long for another goal, as Uruguay's Cavani scored a second goal just seven minutes later.

After the first Cavani's goal -where Luis Suarez delivered the ball over his head, finishing off the Portuguese goalkeeper- Portugal tried unsuccessfully to get close to the South American area.

When the former Manchester United player had flat game In Portugal's final group stage outing against Iran, Ricardo Quaresma chipped in with a goal to see Porgual over the line, and might have again, had his extra time effort not been fired straight into the waiting hands of Muslera.

Ronaldo's great start in Russian Federation allowed him to surpass the combined total of three goals he had scored in his previous three World Cups.

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"I'm happy, and I'm leaving here content because things went pretty well in general", he said.

With Uruguay surviving Portugal's last-gasp attacks and advancing to the quarterfinals, where it'll face France on Friday, the availability of Cavani takes on extreme importance given his status as one of Uruguay's most important players.

Portugal coach Fernando Santos expected Ronaldo to keep contributing to the national team.

Ronaldo posted a score of 6.66 out of 10 for his performance against Uruguay, according to data website Whoscored.com- and this is the lowest score he received in the four matches he played at the 2018 World Cup.

Cavani - hugging the touchline on the right wing - hit a brilliant crossfield pass to Suarez wide left.

Going on to suggest that "no single player" can contain him for ninety minutes, Tabarez went as far to name-check even his most revered defender, Diego Godín, as being incapable of carrying out the task.

"Now we have a very strong opponent in France", Tabarez said.

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