Cristiano Ronaldo made history by becoming the first player to score in five World Cups and guiding Portugal to a 3-2 win over Ghana on day five of the World Cup in Qatar.
The 37-year-old scored a massive penalty in the 61st minute to put Fernando Santos’ side ahead in the Group H clash at the 974 Stadium in Doha Manchester United.
Portugal’s lead did not last long as Ghana captain Andre Ayew equalized in the 73rd minute, marking the first goal by an African side at this year’s tournament.
The roaring Black Stars fans erupted in cheers after watching their team fail to fire a shot for the first 45 minutes.
The celebrations were short-lived, however, as Portugal warmed up to make it 3-1 after 80 minutes with two goals from Joao Felix and Rafael Leao in the seven minutes that followed.
However, any Portuguese hopes of a comfortable win were dashed by Ghana’s Osman Bukari’s 3-2 89th-minute win.
A tense nine minutes of extra time ensued but Portugal held on to take three points and move top of the group.
Next up is Portugal against Uruguay on Monday. Ghana plays South Korea on the same day.
Brazil vs Serbia
Brazil opened their World Cup campaign in style as Richarlison propelled the tournament favorites to a 2-0 win over Serbia at the Lusail Stadium.
The 25-year-old striker scored just under the hour of the Group G game and followed that up shortly afterwards with a spectacular second goal in the 73rd minute.
Serbia, who put up stiff resistance in the first two-thirds of the game, had to chase the shadows while the Brazilian players twirled the ball and regularly attacked the opposition’s penalty area, underscoring their credibility as the competition’s top goalscorers.
But there were concerns about star striker Neymar.
The 30-year-old had helped the Selecao win the 2013 Confederations Cup and their first Olympic gold medal at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro games, but he limped out of action against Serbia in the 80th minute after picking up a shot tightened his right ankle.
Neymar has had problems with that foot before and the Paris St. Germain player sat on the bench with his face covered while receiving treatment for the remainder of the game.
With Brazil’s win, they remain at the top of Group G, followed by Switzerland.
On Monday, the South American giants, aiming for their sixth World Cup victory, meet Switzerland. On the same day, Serbia plays Cameroon.
Uruguay vs South Korea
Uruguay and South Korea kicked off their World Cup campaigns at Doha’s Education City Stadium with a fast-paced game that ended in a goalless draw.
Despite the lack of goals, the atmosphere in the stadium was electric and South Korean fans banged drums throughout the game.
Uruguay – known as La Celeste – came closest to scoring when Diego Godin hit the post with a header in the first half. Federico Valverde hit the post again in the 89th minute with a long-range shot.
South Korea also had several chances and will be frustrated that Hwang Ui-jo couldn’t do more after going uncovered in the 37th minute.
Switzerland versus Cameroon
Switzerland, playing at the Al Janoub Stadium, edged out a lively side from Cameroon in their Group G game and maintained their unbeaten record in their opening games at the World Cup.
Forward Breel Embolo scored the winning goal for Switzerland in the first half.
The 25-year-old was born in Cameroon’s capital, Yaoundé, but moved to Switzerland with his family and became a Swiss citizen shortly after his 18th birthday.
After the goal, Embolo raised his hands apologetically as teammates celebrated around him. He pointed to the Swiss fans behind his goal, then to the Cameroonian fans on the opposite corner of the stadium.
Cameroon was the better team in the first half, while Switzerland pulled themselves together in the second half.
After the 1-0 win, Switzerland will face Brazil and Cameroon on Serbia on Monday.
Off the pitch:
Social media sensation
Abubakr Abbass, a 23-year-old Kenyan, has become a fan favorite – and casual social media sensation – in Qatar.
Seated on a tennis referee’s chair and clad in a large foam finger, he uses his trusty megaphone to lead the hundreds of fans visiting the historic market called Souq Waqif to the nearby subway station.
His helpful advice “Metro? This way. Metro? This way,” has now become a buzzword.
“I saw him on TikTok. I found it really funny. He makes me laugh; It’s such a simple task,” said a young fan in a Chelsea football shirt.
Fake video about Ukraine fans
Al Jazeera said a video attributed to the news network and circulating on social media was fake.
The video claims three “drunk” Ukrainian football fans were arrested and also spread “Nazi symbols” in Doha.
“The video in question is completely fake and Al Jazeera has never released any news regarding this story,” Al Jazeera said in a statement.
The video’s main message about the “Ukrainian Nazis” echoes pro-Russian misinformation circulating on the internet.
“The basic Russian narrative for export is the alleged ‘Nazi’ character of Ukraine’s political regime,” Kyiv-based analyst Aleksey Kushch told Al Jazeera.
The allegations “serve as justification for war for both [a] domestic [Russian] audience and for foreigners [audiences]’ said Kushch.
Although there are some outspoken far-right, ultra-nationalist and white supremacist groups in Ukraine, their current influence on Ukrainian political life is limited.