Ronaldo says Portugal must improve after Morocco win

Cristiano Ronaldo in training

Having drawn 3-3 with Portugal after a stunning hat-trick from Cristiano Ronaldo, Spain would have been forgiven for thinking their hardest test in the group was over, but Iran posed a very different challenge. Portugal, Uruguay and Spain edged past their challengers by one goal to nil victory.

Saeid Ezatolahi will attempt to put aside the disappointment of seeing his potential equaliser against Spain ruled out for offside when Iran go for a win against Portugal that would fire them into the knockout phase of the World Cup for a first time.

Despite their valiant display, Morocco will rue the unforgivable defending that made all their subsequent good work irrelevant.

Ronaldo became the all-time leading worldwide goalscorer for a European team with his goal on Wednesday afternoon, moving past Ferenc Puskás to stand alone at 85 goals - behind only Ali Daei's 109 goals for Iran in the all-time global standings.

That's all before the second round of matches continues with three more contests, including the return of Cristiano Ronaldo's thighs, Luis Suarez's Uruguay and 2010 world champions Spain.

Speaking about Morocco's solid performance against Portugal, Santos said: "They are a team which caused a lot of trouble".

These are three things we learnt from the game.

Lionel Messi is under increased pressure to redeem himself when Argentina face Croatia in Thursday's pivotal match after eternal rival Cristiano Ronaldo scored his fourth goal of the World Cup to send Morocco packing.

The win followed Russia's 5-0 thrashing of Saudi Arabia in the first game of the tournament.

Spain could not managed to get a second despite their best efforts while Iran nearly scored an equaliser when Mehdi's powerful header hit the crossbar. 38 goals were scored in the first set of 16 matches, and we've already seen some big shocks along the way. "We knew how to suffer".

"We still try our best, always".

The defeat to France mean the Socceroos are targeting a win against Denmark in Samara on Thursday to have a realistic chance of qualifying from the group stages. "We can improve, and I hope we will keep winning while we do so, but nobody is giving anything away easily".

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