MX23RW : Wednesday, November 14 07:39:42

Fernando Santos congratulates Uruguay on narrow victory

Santos congratulates Uruguay on victory
© Reuters
Fernando Santos says that he "would have preferred to play worse and win" after his Portugal side were knocked out of the World Cup with a 2-1 loss to Uruguay.

Portugal manager Fernando Santos has admitted to being "very sad" after his side's World Cup campaign was brought to an end by Uruguay.

The European champions levelled up the match in Sochi through a Pepe header, only for Edinson Cavani to double his personal tally in a 2-1 win for his side.

Santos says that tasting defeat in the last 16 is a tough pill to swallow due to the weight of expectation on his side, but the 63-year-old was also keen to give credit to the opposition for their victory.

"First of all, congratulations to Uruguay," he told reporters post-match. "It's very sad for Portugal, though. We know that the squares have been full back home and that the people there were really rooting for us.

"We could feel their presence with us and there's a real sadness in the dressing room that we weren't able to make it through for them. In football, there are no moral victories and I would have preferred to play worse and win the match.

"But I do feel that the second half was very good from us in terms of desire and our determination to score. We tried our best and we played a good game, I think. But you always want to win, and we lost, so well done to Uruguay for making it through."

Portugal have lost each of their last four World Cup knockout matches since edging out England on penalties in the quarter-finals 12 years ago.


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Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo during the match against Uruguay on June 30, 2018
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