Tonight sees the first Semi Final of Euro 2016 as Portugal take on Wales. This encounter will pit the Real Madrid Galacticos of Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale against each other. Which one will get the upper hand and lead their side onto Sunday’s final.
At club level it’s fair to say that Bale is often left in the limelight of his Portuguese teammate so there is extra impetus for him to get one over Ronaldo tonight. Bale has certainly had the better tournament of the two so far and what better way to emphasise that then by dumping Portugal out of the tournament.
Not many would have given them a chance in their Quarter Final against Belgium last Friday but Chris Coleman’s side produced a stunning team performance on the way to a historic 3-1 victory.
That win did come at a price though as both Arron Ramsey and Ben Davies will miss this game through suspension. Ramsey especially has been in exceptional form but that’s also not to do away with the efforts of Ben Davies at the back. Both players will not only be sorely missed they will also be hoping that their teammates can do the job and get them to Paris at the end of the week.
For Portugal they really have failed to impress. No wins in the group stage, needing 118 minutes to get past Croatia and requiring penalties to get past Poland.
That said they still find themselves in a major tournament semi final so although the performances have been by and large forgettable they still have a good a chance as any of winning the competition.
Much will be made of the battle between Ronaldo and Bale but Portugal can also rely on Nani and Ricardo Quaresma to cause a threat and with a weakened Wales backline they will fancy their chances of getting on the scoresheet
By his own standards Cristiano Ronaldo has been misfiring while Nani has looked relatively impressive, although with Nani he still has a tendency to go to ground too easily and can even with the benefit of Footballing maturity behind him be a frustrating watch.
Renato Sanches is the talk of many after his £61m to Bayern Munich although that move isn’t the hot topic regarding him lately as reports have surfaced that he may actually be 24 and not the 18 year old wonderkid that Bayern have spent big on. DNA testing kits at the ready
One man who hasn’t moved this Summer but you would imagine will after the tournament concludes is Half Robson-Kanu it was elegant goal in Friday night that gave Wales the lead and he’ll be hoping to once again put himself in the shop window with another impressive performance
The big question is though can Wales do it?. If they had a full strength team then there would be absolutely no reason why not but I just think the suspensions of both Ramsey and Davies will make it too much of a task.
Everyone in England seems to be hunting for Welsh ancestry as of late but I think after Tonight’s result those claims will be denounced as Portugal march on to the final. Heartbreak for Wales and the headlines for Ronaldo