- Cristiano Ronaldo will lead Portugal against Spain in their 2018 FIFA World Cup opener tonight
- Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho believes that Ronaldo will miss the service from Toni Kroos and Luka Modric in the Portugal team.
- Spain will be managed by Fernando Hierro after the sacking of Julen Lopetegui
Cristiano Ronaldo will lead his country tonight in their 2018 FIFA World Cup opener against 2010 World Champions Spain. The Latest World Cup News is that after the sacking of Julen Lopetegui as the head coach have appointed their director of football Fernando Hierro as his replacement.
The opening encounter against Spain key for Portugal at FIFA 2018 World Cup
However, the chaos prior to the tournament in the Spanish camp will not make things any easier for Portugal, as they know that when both teams are on the pitch, it will be 11 men vs 11 men and each and every one of the Spanish players is a match-winner in his own right.
Cristiano Ronaldo will be vying to cement his legacy as the greatest footballer of all-time if he can inspire his Portugal team to the World Cup glory. He will be watched by millions of people across the world but there is one man who will be keeping a close eye on him and that is his former manager Jose Mourinho.
Mourinho predicts a tough FIFA 2018 World Cup for Cristiano Ronaldo
The Manchester United manager is currently in Russia as a pundit for local sports broadcasters RT. However, being a Portuguese, he is also rooting for his country but is afraid that the midfield support that Cristiano Ronaldo enjoys at Real Madrid is severely lacking in this Portugal team.
Speaking ahead of 2016 European Champions opening encounter against La Roja, Mourinho said, “One thing is Ronaldo for Portugal. Another is Ronaldo with Real Madrid. We don’t have a Modric or a Kroos.”
33-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo knows that in order to achieve his targets each passing year, he will need more and more help from his supporting cast, whether is at Real Madrid or for the national team. In Madrid, he has the midfield-duo of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos running rings around the opposition and making sure they deliver the perfect balls ahead for the World’s best player.
However, in Portugal, Ronaldo has to call upon the likes of Bernardo Silva, Goncalo Guedes, Bruno Fernandes and Joao Moutinho to help him put those balls in the back of the net. Bernardo Silva and Goncalo Guedes come into the tournament after a stellar campaign with their respective clubs and are very much capable of producing moments of brilliance but still do not operate at the levels of the German and Croatian in the Madrid line-up and according to Mourinho could hold back Ronaldo at this World Cup.
After the Spain encounter, Portugal will take on Morocco before ending their group stage with a match against Iran. Tell us where you think Portugal will end up in 2018 FIFA World Cup?
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