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"Cavani sustained an injury tonight and we will have to see how that evolves as it's not clear at this stage how serious it is", Uruguay's long-serving coach Oscar Tabarez told reporters.

Yet despite his brilliance - and some talented teammates - Argentina have remained without such a trophy - losing to Germany in the 2010 World Cup quarterfinals and suffering the same fate in the 2014 final in Rio. This is the third time that this record has changed hands in Russian Federation, with Ronaldo and Ricardo Quaresma having both broken it during the group stage. "There is a fantastic group with enormous ambition that wants to succeed and I am very confident that the national team will continue to be at the highest level".

Cristiano Ronaldo lit up the World Cup in his own inimitable style, curling in a late free kick to complete a remarkable hat-trick in a group match between Portugal and Spain.

Two of the game's biggest players on one of the game's biggest stages walked together slowly with their arms around each other during a brief pause in the action.

"We played better than Uruguay, but it's those who score more goals who win".

Portugal stepped up the tempo after the restart and were rewarded when Uruguay were caught napping by a short corner. He was up against the strongest defence in the tournament, Uruguay.

Against Uruguay, though, we saw the reality of Portugal's overreliance on the Real Madrid forward.


Suarez held up play for a few seconds to give Cavani time to arrive at the goal, then cut back and laced a ideal cross that ricocheted off Cavani's face and into the back of the net.

Cavani said he felt a pain and couldn't continue, but was hopeful he could recover in time to be on the field against France.

Ronaldo, thwarted at set-pieces and restricted to potshots, struggled to inspire the European champions and bows out of the tournament on the same day as La Liga rival Lionel Messi, two headline acts whose World Cup time may be up. He opened the scoring after just seven minutes in Sochi heading home from a Luis Suarez freekick and, after Pepe headed Portugal level shortly after the restart, Cavani curled in a 62nd-minute victor.

"The truth is, it was really exciting", Cavani said.

Now, Uruguay will take on France on Friday at 3pm.

"In football, there are no moral victories and I would have preferred to play worse and win the match", Portugal coach Fernando Santos said.

Uruguay's Edinson Cavani (L) heads to score his team's opening goal against Portugal during their 2018 World Cup round of 16 match in Sochi on Saturday.


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