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Portugal’s Silvas put Poland to the sword

Portugal’s Silvas put Poland to the sword
By Eurosport

11/10/2018 at 18:47Updated 11/10/2018 at 22:43

UEFA Nations League – Group A3 - Silesian Stadium – Poland 2 (K Piatek 18, Blaszczykowski 77) Portugal 3 (A Silva 31, Glik 42 og, B Silva 52)

Portugal had three Silvas to thank in the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo as they recovered from a goal down to beat Poland in the Nations League.

After Krzysztof Piatek scored his first for Poland – having already netted 13 times in eight games for Genoa this season – it was all Portugal thereafter.

The first Silva to get in on the act was Andre, who turned home from Pizzi’s cross, and then Rafa was cruelly denied after gloriously bringing down Ruben Neves’ pinpoint pass, with Kamil Glik sending the ball into his own net with a sliding tackle.

After the break, Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva made it three, and though Jakub Blaszczykowski breathed some life into the game, Portugal held on to deservedly make it two wins from two in the Nations League.

TALKING POINT

Silva x 3 = Joy 4 Portugal

Poland left themselves horribly exposed after taking the lead and they were comprehensively outplayed from there on in. Had it not been for Glik’s sliding tackle, all three Silvas – Andre, Bernardo and Rafa – would have had a goal apiece, but poor old Rafa was denied.

Regardless, this was a clinical showing from Portugal’s front three. Not quite a golden display, mind, so I guess you could say it was a silv- never mind.

MAN OF THE MATCH

Joao Cancelo (Portugal) – First time watching the right-back, and what a player he could become. A far from perfect performance, with a few defensive aspects of his game which need to be ironed out, but offensively the 24-year-old is some threat. He was afforded the freedom of Silesian Stadium at times down the right, and was a constant menace for Poland's Artur Jedrzejczyk to deal with. The Silvas shone, but so did Cancelo. Juventus have some player on their hands.

PLAYER RATINGS

Poland: Fabianski 6, Bereszynski 5, Glik 5, Bednarek 5, Jedrzejczyk 5, Zielinski 6, Klich 6, Krychowiak 5, Kurzawa 6, Piatek 6, Lewandowski 5. Subs: Kedziora 6, Blaszczykowski 7, Grosicki 6.

Portugal: Patricio 6, Cancelo 7, Pepe 6, Dias 6, Mario Rui 6, Neves 7, William 6, Pizzi 6, Bernardo Silva 7, Rafa Silva 7, Andre Silva 7. Subs: Sanches 6, Danilo N/A, Fernandes N/A.

MATCH HIGHLIGHTS

18 - GOAL! Poland take the lead! Piatek brings his club form to the international stage, rising highest to head home a corner after the cross evaded Patricio.

31 - GOAL! Portugal equalise! Andre Silva strikes again, and it's all too easy for the forward, turning home from Pizzi's low cross inside the six-yard area. Where was the defence?

42 - GOAL! Portugal take the lead! And it's going to go down as a Glik own-goal.... A wonderful long pass from Neves is brought down beautifully by R.Silva, who glides past Fabianski, but the sliding tackle from Glik ends up sending the ball into the net when Silva would have had a simple tap-in.

53 - GOAL! Portugal are two clear! Poland have a mountain to climb, and it's too easy for Bernardo Silva, who runs towards the box, then across the box waiting to pull his left trigger, before eventually squeezing an effort beyond Fabianski, who perhaps should have done better.

76 - CLOSE! Poland come within a whisker of getting back into this game... Zielinski's cross is met by Bednarek and it is just wide of the far post.

77’ - GOAL! Poland are back in it! I said it was all-but over... but how wrong I am. An awful sliced clearance from Pepe sets up Blaszczykowski, but he still has plenty of work to do. It's a superb first-time effort though, into the far corner beyond Patricio.

KEY STATS

Piatek scored on his second appearance for Poland. The Genoa striker has netted nine Serie A goals in seven games so far this season.

Andre Silva has scored seven goals in Portugal’s last six competitive away matches.

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