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PORTUGAL BEAT URUGUAY TO ADVANCE TO WORLD CUP KNOCKOUT STAGE

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Bruno Fernandes scored twice to give Portugal a 2-0 victory over Uruguay on Monday and send them into the knock-out stages of the World Cup alongside France and Brazil.

The Manchester United midfielder scored a cross-cum-shot nine minutes into the second half and then added an injury-time penalty following a handball by Jose Maria Gimenez.

The match at Doha’s spectacular 89 000-capacity Lusail Stadium also featured the first pitch invader of the Qatar tournament – the man carried messages of support for Ukraine and Iranian women and had a rainbow flag.

With Portugal already through, Uruguay must now beat Ghana in their final Group H match to stand any chance of also progressing.

Both sides made three changes from their opening matches, with Portugal bringing in veteran Pepe for the injured Danilo Pereira, who suffered cracked ribs in training. Pepe became the third-oldest outfield player in World Cup history and it was his first full 90 minutes in more than a month and a half.

“I worked a lot with my club (Porto), which gave me the possibility of being 100 per cent for the national team,” said Pepe of his surprise start.

Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo was largely anonymous in the first 45 minutes but did delight fans with a shoulder pass to pick out William Carvalho, who volleyed over.

The main drama came after the break.

Moments after a pitch invader ran onto the pitch carrying an LGBTQ rainbow flag and with a message supporting Ukraine and Iranian women on his T-shirt, only to be spectacularly tackled by security, Portugal went in front.

Earlier in the day Mohammed Kudus netted twice as Ghana edged out South Korea 3-2 in a dramatic and fluctuating World Cup Group H game on Monday to stay in contention for the next round.

Ghana led 2-0 at halftime but allowed South Korea back into the match as Cho Gue-sung netted twice in three minutes to level at 2-2, only for Kudus to earn Ghana victory in a heart-stopping contest.

Ghana, who lost their opening group game 3-2 to Portugal, moved on to three points in the group, with the Koreans on one after two games.

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