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World Cup 2014

Football: Ronaldo leads rampant Portugal to big win

Published on Jun 11, 2014 10:11 AM

EAST RUTHERFORD (AFP) - Cristiano Ronaldo had a hand in a goal and hit a post on his return as Portugal concluded their World Cup preparations with a 5-1 win over the Republic of Ireland on Tuesday.

The Real Madrid striker, who missed his country’s previous two warm-up games because of thigh and knee injuries, was not at his brilliant best for long periods of a one-sided friendly in the United States.

But coach Paulo Bento will just be relieved to see his captain and talisman back after an injury layoff that had sparked fears that Ronaldo might not be fit for Brazil.

Ronaldo was substituted on 65 minutes, but it appeared to have been a planned change and there was no indication that he was suffering any ill effects from his injury problems.

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