Cristiano Ronaldo On The World Cup: Why Are Portuguese Fans Turning Against Him?

A once-worshiped Portuguese National team player Cristiano Ronaldo is now seen in a different light by a country he gave his all for the majority of his career. This occurrence backs the saying, “you either live long enough to see yourself turn into the villain, or you die a hero.” The erratic season for Cristiano Ronaldo on the football field continues to get worse.

This year alone, he has had serious issues with club football that resulted in a dramatic exit from Manchester United. Now, the most recent one is the eventual elimination of Portugal at the hands of Morocco.  The World Cup dream of Cristiano Ronaldo has likely ended, but is his entire career nearing its conclusion? Here we will look at the events that led to Ronaldo being seen in this light by the Portuguese Fans.

Ronaldo 2022 Qatar World Cup Stint

  • Portugal opened their 2022 Qatar World Cup stint against Ghana, and Ronaldo appeared to have put all the drama at Manchester United behind him. He scored a penalty to put Portugal in front, and it was all smiles for the Portuguese forward, who appeared to have debunked rumors of any strain between him and the players in the national team.  
  • Moving on, Portugal played Uruguay; next, Ronaldo failed to record any goal contribution in an eventual win for the Portuguese to establish their dominance in Group H. 
  • The most recent incident began when Ronaldo responded to being substituted in the 65th minute of Portugal’s 2-1 defeat to South Korea in the last round of group games. He showed displeasure in what he believed was an early substitution, but the coach laid any discrepancies to rest and assured Ronaldo was still in sync with the team.
  •  Ronaldo was substituted on the bench against Switzerland in the last 16; this was the first major tournament game he had not started in fourteen years. Goncalo Ramos, his teenage replacement, then scored a hat-trick, making Ronaldo the star player who had previously only played as a sub.
  • Even though he was given most of the second half to have an impact and entered the game with his team behind 1-0, it was how he was deployed against Morocco.

Why Are The Portuguese Fans Against Ronaldo

Ronaldo’s rocky tournament never seemed to have a happy ending, as he was demoted to the role of replacement by his country. However, his tears following Portugal’s quarterfinal exit turned out to be an accurate representation of his current condition. The Portuguese fans started turning against Ronaldo when they realized he was no longer the player he was and might not be able to propel them to the World Cup finals.

The Portuguese fans widely supported dropping Ronaldo from the starting lineup. To confirm that, 70% of respondents to a poll by the newspaper A Bola want him to come off the bench when the Quinas play Switzerland in the round of 16 of the competition. However, no matter how much Ronaldo tries to show he’s more about collective success than individual accolades, his claims on what seemed to be Bruno Fernades’ goals against Uruguay and his attitude towards being on the bench just made it worse. 

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What’s Next For Ronaldo

Ronaldo is without a club, and top teams around the world are boldly refusing the chance to sign him, which did not come as a surprise, especially with how his contract at Manchester United was terminated. 

  • Off the pitch, Ronaldo’s attitude is seen to bring discrepancies in the locker room, and while on the pitch, he doesn’t have the same impact and intimidating presence. A Saudi Arabia team offered Ronaldo a multi-million dollar deal. He has not commented on his acceptance or refusal of the offer. Where next he will play, club football is yet to be known.
  • Fernando Santos, the Portuguese coach of the Portuguese National team, has freed his team by benching Ronaldo in the round of 16. The fact that Portugal performed with significantly better flexibility, fluidity, and potency without the all-time leading scorer in the history of the international game justified his decision, not simply because Ramos, who took Ronaldo’s position up front, scored a hat-trick.
  • Ronaldo claimed his time in the Portuguese national team is not over and that he’d play for them in the upcoming Euro 2024. His world cup dreams might be over, but he will not give up on getting more silverware for Portugal. 

Ronaldo, within a twinkle of an eye, became a villain in the eyes of the Portuguese fans, and at some point in time, he will have to realize that he’s no longer the player he once was so that the team can move forward. The same thing happened to him in Manchester United, as the team started performing better without him in the starting lineup. The Portuguese National team is no longer his, and it is better he passes the torch in an honorable way rather than end things on a sour note. 

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The World Cup Semifinals In 2022, Predictions

World Cup anticipation for who will win the trophy in Qatar 2022 is growing among fans around the globe. The good news is that we did the grunt work and figured it out for you.

As we get closer to the Qatar World Cup Semi-Finals, the situation can change quickly. So, Half A Goal prepared a small Groups overview and predictions on Semi-Finals.

The Pairs Of The 1/4 Finals Of The 2022 FIFA World Cup 

  • Friday, December 9, 10am ET – 7am PT. Croatia – Brazil
  • Friday, December 9,  2 p.m. ET Netherlands – Argentina
  • Saturday, December 10, 10:00 a.m. EST / 3:00 p.m. GMT / 4:00 p.m. CET. Morocco – Portugal
  • Saturday, December 10, 2:00 p.m. EST / 7:00 p.m. GMT / 8:00 p.m. CET. England – France

Brazil and Argentina, as well as France (or England) and Portugal, can play each other in the semifinals.

  • Netherlands/Argentina – Croatia/Brazil
  • England/France – Morocco/Portugal

Semi-Final World Cup Predictions

Analysts from Half A Goal analyzed the history and past matches of all teams in the 2022 World Cup and determined that the most likely contenders to win the semifinals would be Argentina, Brazil, France and Portugal.

Based on the bookmakers’ predictions, as well as the past matches played by these teams, it can be noted that each team has its own strengths in strategy. Nevertheless, only two teams will make it to the finals that will not only show attack on the field, but also those teams who will make the least number of reckless decisions on the field. 

The underdogs can be identified by analyzing odds and teams key problem areas based on their matches’ performance at the 2022 World Cup. According to Half A Goal, they are Croatia, England, the Netherlands and Morocco. 

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Groups Overview, Who Will Be in the Finals?

The main contenders for the final are Brazil and Argentina, however just one team can proceed to the Final. Expecting to watch a historical battle of South-American teams in semifinal.l

The World Cup is said to determine not just the team that will lift the most coveted trophy in the world, but also the country where soccer is currently better developed than in any other country in the world. Whatever the outcome of the Qatar Mundial, the strongest football nation in the world right now is probably France.

Before and during the tournament, Didier Deschamps’ team suffered huge personnel losses: Benzema, Kante, Pogba, Lucas Hernandez – there is hardly any team in the world that could cope with such a powerful blow to their team potential. And France is doing well, and despite its losses, it looked more than a real contender for the title in the group stage.

Who could prevent the French from reaching the final? England, after being in a fairly easy group, managed to have trouble even there against the United States. The English went far at the last two major tournaments, largely due to an easy playoff schedule; this time, it won’t be any different. Portugal might simply lack skills.

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Argentina Reaches World Cup Quarterfinals: Match Argentina Vs Netherlands

One of the heavy favorites to win the World Cup, Argentina is up against the Netherlands, who can be said to be the tournament’s dark horse. After an early scare to start the tournament by losing to Saudi Arabia, Argentina has been brilliant ever since. They have now made it to the quarter-finals, and they face a serious test in the Netherlands, which has been impressive from the start of the tournament until now. 

Argentina’s Run In The World Cup

Argentina got off to a bad start in the competition. They unexpectedly lost to Saudi Arabia before getting back on track and winning the group with 2-0 victories over Mexico and Poland. Argentina was up against a brilliantly-coached Australia team in the round of 16, and it took them 35 minutes to break the deadlock. Who else to open the scoring for Argentina besides Lionel Messi? The PSG forward received a fast pass from Nicolás Otamendi at the edge of the box, steadied himself, and fired a low drive that sailed through Souttar’s legs and into the far corner of the net. In the second half, Man City’s Striker Julian Alvarez doubled Argentina’s lead to ensure their progression into the quarterfinals. Australia pulled one back close to the end of the game, but the Argentines maintained their lead and won the game.

Netherland’s Run In The World Cup

The Netherlands, the group’s favorite to win, did so, albeit not with the ease everyone anticipated. Cody Gakpo has excelled for the Dutch, scoring in all games, and they were generally strong, only giving up one goal in three games. The Netherlands kicked off their run in the tournament with a 2-0 win over Senegal. They went on to play out a draw against Ecuador, but they won comfortably against the host nation Qatar to progress to the round of 16. The Netherlands were up against the USA in the round of 16, and they cruised past them by winning three goals to one to secure their spot in the quarter-final. The Netherlands had a great start thanks to a goal from Memphis Depay, and the Americans faced a daunting assignment after Daley Blind’s replica goal on the last play of the first half. In the 76th minute, Haji Wright halved the score to set up a tight conclusion, but Denzel Dumfries quickly declared victory by scoring to secure the win. The man of the match, Denzel Dumfries, scored and handed out two assists.

Playing Styles

Bring on the direct, aggressive thriller. This quarterfinal is one of the few World Cup games this year, where both sides start the game with an aggressive purpose of attacking and trying to gain possession. No ten-man defensive shells, no long passes to a solitary striker in isolation. In Qatar, the Netherlands and Argentina have repeatedly displayed cutting-edge, precise finishing and depth off the bench to change the momentum. The attacking prowess on display, from Messi and Julian Alvarez to Memphis Depay and Cody Gakpo, speaks for itself. This should result in a fast-paced, end-to-end match where both defenses are strained.

Strength And Weaknesses


  • Their strength lies in their adept defensive play; the Netherlands will likely try to neutralize Messi with their back three and Frenkie de Jong.
  • Also, how they transition from attack to defense. Denzel Dumfries and Daley Blind, their two aggressive full-backs, provide them with width as they attack by channeling the ball to the flanks. To distract the defenders, the midfielders spread out, trying to get low crosses into the box for their two strikers to finish.
  • Their weakness is that the Dutch team is surprisingly meek in attack for such a dynamic team. They only managed ten shots worth 0.7 xG against Senegal and two worth 0.1 against Ecuador despite having so much possession in risky areas.


  •  The Argentine team has the talent to play through teams, whether with passing circles between a nimble central midfield three or with progressive center-backs who can dribble and pass forward. Emiliano Martinez, the goalkeeper, is a gifted passer who can play short to draw the press before playing over it.
  • Argentina finished the group stage atop Group C despite the tension and unforced errors, having the second-best xG differential in the competition so far (behind only France). Over the course of three games, their defense hardly allowed any good shots.
  • Their weakness lies in how they defend the counter-attack. Against Saudi Arabia, the two goals they conceded were on the counter, and that’s typically how the Netherlands plays.

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Match Prediction

  • Messi is the key man for Argentina in this tournament. Messi shoulders a massive load as usual, but this time it’s much more as this is poised as his last chance to win a World Cup, a trophy that would put the finishing touches on a gleaming résumé, but he can’t do it by himself. 
  • On the Netherlands’ side, they broke an American defense that had previously stopped a freely scoring England attack in the group stage, but was breached by the Dutch in a stylish 3-1 victory over the USMNT in the Round of 16. 
  • The Oranje have all the components to grind out a victory with Depay healthy and on fire. At the same time, the experience of Virgil van Dijk and Daley Blind should benefit younger colleagues.
  •  The midfield duel is key to this game as Frenkie de Jong and Rodrigo De Paul will have to battle out the control of the midfield. Both playmakers usually benefit their teams when they have a grasp of a game. 
  • The Inter Milan player’s excursions down the right wing give the Netherlands another dimension, and his matchup with Marcos Acuna could be crucial. Denzel Dumfries stands out as a true X-factor for the Netherlands.

This game has the making of both teams scoring, which will be the prediction here. The teams’ attacking playing style has influenced this decision. They have also conceded heading into this game, which should be the case here. Argentina is the favorite to progress to the semi-finals, but as the underdog in this match, the Netherlands will not go down without a fight. 

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