By Associated Press
March 26, 2018

GENEVA (AP) Portugal was made to pay for a weak first-half display as the Netherlands cruised to a 3-0 win in a friendly on Monday.

Cristiano Ronaldo's evening barely improved after a rough challenge early on by Dutch defender Tonny Vilhena. He left the game after 68 minutes soon after teammate Joao Cancelo was sent off.

The game had been well won by neat Dutch goals from Memphis Depay in the 11th minute, Ryan Babel in the 32nd, and captain Virgil Van Dijk in first-half stoppage time.

Two goals were assisted by teenage defender Matthijs De Ligt, and his fellow 18-year-old from Ajax, Justin Kluivert, made his international debut as a substitute late in the game.

The rebuilding project of new Netherlands coach Ronald Koeman looked more promising in Geneva than it did in a lackluster 1-0 home loss against England on Friday.

It was a first defeat inside 90 minutes for Portugal since gifting Sweden a 3-2 comeback win in a friendly almost exactly a year ago. The European champion also lost a penalty shootout to Chile in the Confederations Cup semifinals in June.

Ronaldo saved his team from defeat on Friday with two stoppage-time headers to beat World Cup-bound Egypt 2-1.

The Portugal star reacted furiously at not being awarded a penalty when the score was 1-0. Replays suggested Ronaldo fell after kicking his left foot into the turf as defender Nathan Ake brushed across his back.

The Dutch thoroughly deserved their lead, and Depay was denied his second goal in the 43rd by Anthony Lopes diving to push away a powerful header.

Without Pepe's veteran presence, the experienced central defensive pairing of Jose Fonte and Rolando - who was substituted at halftime - simply looked slow-footed.

Fonte, playing in the Chinese league, let Depay get in front of him to pounce on a loose ball and open the scoring. It finished off a sweeping Dutch counterattack keyed by Davy Propper's neat pass infield from the left flank, which let Depay find Van Dijk surging forward on the right.

De Ligt went deep into the Portugal defense to create the next two goals, first firing a powerful cross from near the byline that Babel met unmarked to guide the ball in with his head.

In stoppage time, De Ligt was alone at the far post to meet a free kick with a header looped into the path of Van Dijk for a crisp shot across the goalmouth into the corner of the net.

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HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)