By Jack Wilkinson
Highlights and report as Goncalo Guedes strike secures Nations League title for Portugal
Portugal have been topped champions on the inaugural Nations League finals with a 1-Zero victory over the Netherlands in entrance of a jubilant residence crowd in Porto.
Goncalo Guedes was the hero on the Estadio do Dragao as his second-half strike broke the Dutch resistance to make sure the reigning European champions added UEFA’s newest competitors to their trophy cupboard.
The Netherlands have been a shadow of the facet that dismantled England within the semi-finals, Ronald Koeman’s facet registering only a single shot on course in 90 minutes.
It was billed as Cristiano Ronaldo versus Virgil van Dijk forward of kick-off and the Portugal captain received the competition, guiding his nation to a event victory on residence soil 15 years on from the heartache of Euro 2004.
The inaugural Nations League last had all of the elements for a showpiece occasion to savour – a surprising venue and two star-studded line-ups – however the Dutch did not flip up in a primary half dominated by the hosts.
Portugal steadily turned the tide of their favour because the half progressed, William Carvalho signalling the shift in gear when he got here inside inches of deflecting the energetic Bruno Fernandes’ cross previous Jasper Cillessen on 12 minutes.
Fernandes posed the best risk, stinging Cillessen’s palms with a dipping effort on the half hour earlier than Ronaldo headed the ensuing nook straight on the Dutch goalkeeper.
Fernandes despatched a rasping drive over six minutes later earlier than Ronaldo drew one other save from Cillessen on 42 minutes, as Portugal registered their 11th try and Holland’s one.
The introduction of Quincy Promes galvanised the Dutch early within the second half. Georginio Wijnaldum raced by on objective on 50 minutes and noticed an tried lob swatted away by Rui Patricio, although it might not have counted after the offside flag was belatedly raised.
Portugal quickly regained management and took a deserved lead on the hour as Bernardo Silva’s disguised reverse go on the finish of a effective group transfer arrange Guedes, and his fierce right-footed strike proved too highly effective for the outstretched arm of Cillessen.
Holland upped the depth instantly, registering their first try on course inside 4 minutes of Portugal’s opener as Memphis Depay highly effective header was saved after which gathered on the second try by Patricio.
Portugal withstood a late Netherlands rally as Marten de Roon’s rasping drive flashed over the bar on 79 minutes, Virgil van Dijk noticed a header blocked at shut by Jose Fonte and substitute Luuk de Jong headed broad, however the evening belonged to the hosts, with Ronaldo the primary captain to get his fingers on the trophy.