Ronaldo relaxed ahead of Portugal World Cup opener versus Ghana
Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal are taking on Ghana at Stadium 974 in Doha as both sides get their Group H campaigns under way.
Ronaldo is playing in his first match since leaving Manchester United by mutual consent earlier this week following his explosive interview with Piers Morgan ahead of the tournament. The 37-year-old Portugal captain is playing in his fifth World Cup and admits it will probably be his last chance to try and win the Jules Rimet trophy. He bids to do so alongside plenty of talented players including Bernardo Silva, Bruno Fernandes and Rafael Leao.
But Ghana will be no pushovers and boast quality throughout their side, including the Arsenal midfielder Thomas Partey at the heart of the team. Every game will be crucial in what has been pinpointed as the most evenly matched group at the tournament, with Uruguay and South Korea also competing for a place in the knockout rounds.
Follow all the action with our live blog below.
Thomas Partey and Daniel Amartey among key players in Ghana XI
And the Ghana line-up is in, too!
Zigi; Amartey, Seidu, Djiku, Salisu, Rahman; Abdul Samed, Partey, Kudus; Williams, A Ayew
Alex Pattle24 November 2022 14:55
Cristiano Ronaldo leads Portugal frontline against Ghana
The Portugal line-up is in! Ronaldo leads the attacking line, as expected…
Costa; Cancelo, Dias, Pereira, Guerreiro; Neves, Otavio; Fernandes, Felix, Silva; Ronaldo.
Alex Pattle24 November 2022 14:52
Portugal vs Ghana predicted line-ups
Here are our predicted line-ups for this game, with the starting XIs expected to be confirmed in the next few minutes…
Portugal XI: Costa; Cancelo, Pepe, Dias, Guerreiro; Neves, Carvalho, Fernandes; B Silva, Ronaldo, Leao
Ghana XI: Ati Zigi; Lamptey, Amartey, Djiku, Baba; Partey, Abdul Samed; Sulemana, Kudus, J Ayew; Williams
Alex Pattle24 November 2022 14:49
Cristiano Ronaldo: Can Portugal legend still make a difference on the world stage?
Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo, who has been named the best player in the world five times, will arrive in Qatar with a mission to prove that he can still make a difference.
It is indisputable that Ronaldo is one of the greatest forwards of all time but his latest struggles with Manchester United and Portugal have raised many questions about whether his brilliant career is nearing a bitter end.
Ronaldo is the leading scorer in the history of men’s international football with 117 goals in 191 official matches.
Between his first Portugal goal versus Greece at Euro 2004 and his most recent, a double against Switzerland in June 2022, 18 years have passed, making him a model of longevity.
He has scored 818 goals in his career and holds the record for the most Champions League goals in the competition’s history with 140.
Luke Baker24 November 2022 14:36
Cristiano Ronaldo leaves Manchester United with immediate effect
Ronaldo lashed out at United’s owners, executives, manager and even some of his own teammates in an extraordinary tirade which aired in the week leading up to the tournament, effectively torching his bridges with the club, and the hierarchy concluded Erik ten Hag’s team would be better off without the striker going forwards.
In a statement on Tuesday, Ronaldo said that he “loved” the club and their fans, but that it was time for a “new challenge”.
“Following conversations with Manchester United we have mutually agreed to end our contract early,” Ronaldo said. “I love Manchester United and I love the fans, that will never ever change. However, it feels like the right time for me to seek a new challenge. I wish the team every success for the remainder of the season and for the future.”
It is understood Ronaldo will not receive a pay-off from the club.
Luke Baker24 November 2022 14:31
Is Portugal vs Ghana on TV? Kick-off time, channel and how to watch World Cup fixture
Bruno Fernandes, Bernardo Silva and Joao Cancelo are real threats among Fernando Santos’ squad, and they will be motivated to make the most of this generation of talent as they bid to win Portugal’s first World Cup. To do so, however, the 2016 European champions must first navigate ties with Uruguay, South Korea and Ghana.
Here’s all you need to know:
Luke Baker24 November 2022 14:25
Portugal vs Ghana
Welcome to The Independent’s live coverage of Portgual vs Ghana in Group H at World Cup 2022.
Portugal renew their bid for a first-ever World Cup trophy with a tricky opener in Qatar. The Portuguese are nowadays seen as one of the major nations in global football, a status boosted by their Euro 2016 triumph, but the reality is that their best World Cup effort was a third-placed finish in 1966. They did come fourth in 2006 but have not gotten past the last 16 since, exiting at that stage in 2010 and 2018 while crashing out in the group in 2014.
With superstar Cristiano Ronaldo leading them on the pitch, however, it always feels like Portugal have a shot at glory, and the 37-year-old will feel especially motivated in what may mark his final World Cup. This time around, he and his teammates will have to navigate Group H, first facing Ghana before taking on Uruguay and South Korea.
Today’s game also marks Ronaldo’s first time back on the pitch since Tuesday’s news that he has left Manchester United by mutual consent following his explosive interview with Pier Morgan earlier this month.
Stick with us for full live coverage of Portugal vs Ghana.
Luke Baker24 November 2022 14:16