Skip to main content

Portugal manager Fernando Santos has said that he is able to 'understand' the frustrations of Cristiano Ronaldo, who stormed off at the final whistle after his side drew 1-1 with Iran in the World Cup on Monday.

The five-time Balon d'Or winner missed a penalty in the second half, which would have put his side 2-0 up and ultimately won them the game.

However, the match instead finished 1-1, with Iran scoring a late penalty to cancel out a wonder goal from Ricardo Quaresma earlier in the second half.

Speaking in his post-match press conference, Santos is quoted by Sky Sports as saying that 'it's normal' for Ronaldo to feel this way, as the best players in the world 'refuse to fail'.

"I understand, it's normal," he said.

SI Recommends

"The best players in the world face that when there isn't an opportunity to really make it happen. That hurts a lot, more to them than to the other players.

"They always want to win, they want to be the best and they refuse to fail - and when they fail they get very upset."

Ronaldo narrowly escaped a red card thanks to further VAR controversy, but the manager admitted that this was not something that he was worried about during the match.

"I wasn't concerned," he added. "It seemed like a normal thing in the match and the referee did what he had to do.

"He went to VAR three times and considered two penalties and one yellow card. I'd have to watch it again to talk about it, but I think the VAR did its job and that's what we have to accept."

Portugal will now face a tricky test against Uruguay in the last 16 on Saturday, after finishing second in their group behind Spain - who also picked up a draw on Monday thanks to plenty of controversy from VAR.