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Portugal rip North Korea to shreds with magnificent 7-0 win

| 21.06.2010

Portugal moved to within touching distance of the round of 16 with a crushing 7-0 win against North Korea.

Despite torrential rain in the first half, the match was played at a lively tempo and, having led 1-0 at half-time, Portugal cut loose in the second period with six goals.

Raul Meireles put Portugal ahead after 28 minutes as he made a well-timed run into the North Korea box and slotted the ball under goalkeeper Myong Guk.

Simao made it 2-0 when he calmly finished a crisp Portuguese move, and Hugo Almeida’s header from a swift counter-attack increased the lead to 3-0.

Cristiano Ronaldo then laid a nicely weighted pass for Tiago, who stroked the ball into the bottom corner, before Liedson came off the bench to hammer home a fifth goal.

Portugal captain Ronaldo was influential as he roamed infield from his wide position, and he cracked one long-range effort against the crossbar before tapping in a sixth goal.

Portugal concluded the scoring as Tiago claimed his second with a pinpoint header.

The next challenge for Carlos Queiroz’s men is their final group match against Brazil, where the victors will qualify for the last 16 as Group G winners.

Even if they lose, however, Portugal are likely to qualify ahead of Ivory Coast because of a vastly superior goal difference.

So with goals flying in and their talisman Ronaldo in form, Portugal look like a side to be feared; a team capable of mounting a serious World Cup challenge.

Are Portugal genuine contenders? They are 20/1 to win the World Cup. See the full Tournament Winner market.



Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.