Friday 22 September 2017

Cristiano Ronaldo's sideline heroics prove he is a real team player after all

Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal during the UEFA EURO 2016 final match between Portugal and France on July 10, 2016 at the Stade de France in Paris, France.(Photo by VI Images via Getty Images)
Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal during the UEFA EURO 2016 final match between Portugal and France on July 10, 2016 at the Stade de France in Paris, France.(Photo by VI Images via Getty Images)
Will Slattery

Will Slattery

When Portugal were running on empty, dying of tiredness at the end of normal time, it was their captain who stepped up.

Cristiano Ronaldo wasn't able to take the field for the extra period having been replaced after injuring his knee early on in his country's 1-0 win over France in the Euro 2016 final. Despite that, he was the man who focused the minds of his team-mates ahead of the crucial 30 minute period that saw Eder strike the decisive blow.

Ronaldo - contrary to the widely held belief about him - proved that he is actually a top team-mate as he cajoled, encouraged and offered advice to his comrades.

And when the Portuguese team took the field, he maintained his prominence on the touchline, issuing instructions and generally just spurring them on.

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PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 10: Cristiano Ronaldo of Portugal encourages his teammates (Pepe no3) prior to the start of extra-time during the UEFA EURO 2016 Final match between Portugal and France at Stade de France on July 10, 2016 in Paris, France. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

When Eder finally scored, nobody was happier than Ronaldo, with the iconic striker crying tears of joy in contrast to his sorrowful outburst following his injury.

For once, it didn't matter that it wasn't Ronaldo who scored the winner - tonight was  the night when the Real Madrid star proved his credentials as a team-mate.



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