Cristiano Ronaldo scores hattrick to earn Portugal a thrilling draw against Spain

  • Cristiano Ronaldo scores hattrick to earn Portugal a thrilling draw against Spain

Cristiano Ronaldo scores hattrick to earn Portugal a thrilling draw against Spain

The Atletico Madrid striker pulled Spain level twice after Cristiano Ronaldo put Portugal ahead, and he told reporters afterwards that he felt good throughout the game.

A day ahead of Spain's opening match, Spain suffered a setback as its coach Julen Lopetegui was sacked by the Spanish football federation after Real Madrid named him as their manager. Midfielders David Silva and Andres Iniesta began showing off some of the ball cycling and verve that had made this the most decorated worldwide side in history.

Here are the player ratings from Fernando Hierro's first game in charge.

Understandably much of the focus will be on Cristiano Ronaldo to deliver for his national side.

The howitzer meant the Portuguese maestro had bagged an astonishing 51st career hat-trick.

Spain: De Gea; Odriozola, Pique, Ramos, Alba; Alcantara, Busquets, Iniesta; Isco, Costa, Silva.

But the last laugh would go to Ronaldo.

On Ronaldo's free-kick strike rate in major global tournaments - the goal was his first in 45 attempts - Mourinho added that Ronaldo is well practiced from the dead ball.

Silva saw a close-range shot blocked for a corner kick in the 22nd minute and Portugal almost scored from the resulting cross, Ronaldo setting up Goncalo Guedes whose indecision allowed a recovery run to poke the ball away before he could shoot.

And having led his club, Real Madrid, to three consecutive UEFA Champions League titles, Ramos will be hoping to channel his form and the leadership qualities to help Spain go a long way in Russian Federation.

One of the most promising young talents in the tournament, Portugal's 21-year old rising star Goncalo Guedes will definitely be worth keeping an eye out for, when they start things off against Spain in Sochi.

Portugal and Spain played out to an enthralling 3-3 draw in the second game of Group B at the Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi on Friday night.

"He knows the team is in trouble, he knows the team is not creating, he's frustrated on the pitch, nobody could see Portugal scoring and he knows one possibility of scoring is set plays".

Diego Costa replied twice to get the 2010 champions level, with Nacho's handsome goal having seemingly settled a high-class encounter at the Fisht Stadium.

Some calculated menace and brilliance from Spain's Diego Costa brought Spain level shortly thereafter, only for a Ronaldo effort to catch out the usually reliant David De Gea - 2-1 at half-time.

The goals were scored by Spain's Diego Costa (24' and 55') and Nacho (58').

Spain did not allow that mistake to distract them, though, Costa levelling the scores in the 55th minute.