Spain were deserved winners, admits Portugal coach

Martin Caparrotta
By Martin Caparrotta
cristiano ronaldo

Ronaldo failed to make an impact in Cape Town (Photo: Tsutomu Takasu)

Carlos Queiroz reluctantly conceded that Spain were the deserved winners after his Portugal side were beaten 1-0 by the Euro 2008 champions in the last 16.

David Villa’s 63-minute strike was all that separated the two sides after Portugal’s Ricardo Costa was sent off for an off-the-ball incident involving Joan Capdevila.

“Spain had the better chances and I think, sadly, they deserved to win,” said Queiroz after the match.

“Spain were much more effective moving the ball around. We were looking for chances on the counter-attack. We had our chances — we just didn’t score.”

Cristiano Ronaldo cut a frustrated figure throughout the night after failing to make any real impact on the match and the Real Madrid star refused to talk to reporters as he left the stadium in Cape Town.

But Queiroz believes his team can leave South Africa with their heads held high.

“I believe the fans have justifiable reason to be proud of the way the team has played,” he added.

“We wanted to do well and when we compete at this level, if we manage to obtain second or third, it is not satisfactory.

“We showed ambition and desire to win but it just wasn’t possible. We’ll have to come back stronger.

“We always have as our main goal to win. We also want to have an honourable performance to dignify Portuguese football.

“I wanted us to be able to leave the field with our heads held high, and I think we accomplished this.”

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