Portugal meet Germany in the final Euro 2020 Group F heavyweight clash in Munich tonight.
The 2016 champions were slow to start their delayed title defense with a comfortable win over Hungary on Tuesday, with the game going scoreless for 84 minutes before Raphael Guerreiro’s goal and a brace from Cristiano Ronaldo.
Ronaldo has become the top scorer in the history of the European Championship in Budapest and is now only three behind Iranian great Ali Daei’s all-time international record.
Another positive result on Saturday night will seal Portugal’s transition from the so-called ‘Group of Death’ to the round of 16, as Germany desperately look to score points on the board.
Joachim Low’s side fought fiercely against the coveted France at the Allianz Arena earlier this week, but lost 1-0 to the tournament favorites with a home goal from defender Mats Hummels.
Another loss here would leave the 2014 World Cup winners in dire straits ahead of their final clash with Hungary on Wednesday.
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25 minutes : While the temperature in Munich still hovers around 30 degrees, both groups of players are entitled to a drink break with 20 minutes remaining in the first half.
The opportunity for the two managers to pass on some pearls of wisdom after a lively start to the competition.
23 minutes : Dias scored a clearance over his own crossbar after a cross from Matthias Ginter.
He clears Kroos’ initial corner but Germany keep the pressure on and Gnabry’s thrilling cross is inches away from assuredly being led by Hummels, who just can’t reach him with Pepe beaten.
As it is, there is no one playing at the far post and the chance is lost.
Gnabry the key man for Germany so far, giving Raphael Guerreiro a tough first half.
20 minutes : Ronaldo’s significant influence is only growing now after a cheeky flick to deceive Germany and Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger.
Portugal have the chance to double their lead as Dias crosses the six-meter penalty area and settles to safety.
GOAL! Portugal 1-0 Germany | Cristiano Ronaldo 16 ′
16 minutes : Talk about smash and grab!
It was all of Germany in the early stages in Munich, but they find themselves behind again despite dominating the game.
Portugal emerges from the corner and Bernardo Silva continues before handing a brilliant ball to Diogo Jota, who effortlessly takes it to his chest, waits for goalkeeper Manuel Neuer to engage then places it to Ronaldo for a simple close-range finish .
A brilliant goal on the counter-attack. Ronaldo now within two of Ali Daei’s international goalscoring record …
13 minutes : Thomas Muller is the last German to have a shot blocked before he and Joshua Kimmich fight for a corner from the near side.
However, it is quickly cleared and Portugal breaks at high speed …
10 minutes: More incisive passing game from the Germans, Ruben Dias having to get down to block a powerful low strike from Toni Kroos.
Low will be delighted with this departure. All attacks are led by the hosts, with Portugal struggling to maintain any sort of possession.
Ronaldo is not a bad threat to boast of the counterattack, however …
8 minutes : It’s been a really great start for Germany, who are playing at a good pace and building up bodies at every opportunity to really disrupt Portugal.
Kai Havertz’s low shot is parried by Rui Patricio, but an alert Gnabry keeps the attack alive and remains upright when he could have fallen.
The Bayern striker’s square ball is intercepted and cleared by Danilo.
WITHOUT ANY GOAL
5 minutes: It was really a nice acrobatic finish from Atalanta Gosens’ full-back, but the goal is ruled out for offside against Gnabry.
Still aimless, but an impressive start to the proceedings for Germany, who look full of cunning and energy.
5 minutes: Germany have the ball in the net as Robin Gosens makes a superb finish at the far post after the dangerous cross from Toni Kroos narrowly escapes Serge Gnabry.
He celebrates, but Portugal furiously protests as VAR checks for both handball and possible offside.
I don’t think it’s going to hold …
3 minutes : A quiet opening, with Germany seeing a lot of possession and patiently stroking the ball while looking for an early opening.
There must be more offensive intentions on Low’s side here.