Midfielder Marcelo Diaz insists South Americans will aim to curb Portugal captain's attacking game during their Confederations Cup semis clash today
Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo trains ahead of their Confederations Cup semi-finals with Chile today. Pic/Getty Images
Copa America champions Chile will try to curb Portugal's superstar Cristiano Ronaldo in today's Confederations Cup semi-final with the goal-ace in rich form despite the tax storm brewing in Spain.
The 32-year-old converted a penalty in Saturday's 4-0 thrashing of New Zealand to claim his 75th international goal. The Real Madrid forward has now scored 16 times in his last 10 games for club and country. Portugal's captain will face tax evasion charges in a Madrid court next month, but has dazzled on the pitch in Russia, claiming man-of-the-match awards in all three games, netting two goals and providing an assist.
After steering Portugal to the Euro 2016 title in Paris a year ago, Ronaldo will want to claim a second international title in Sunday's Confederations Cup final in St Petersburg, against Mexico or Germany who meet in the other semi-final.
Ronaldo is closing in on the legendary Ferenc Puskas' European record of 84 international goals, despite the off-field turmoil and constant speculation about his future, having threatened to quit Real.
"We all know he's an amazing player, he's very dangerous and can decide a game alone," said Chile midfielder Marcelo Diaz, who has often faced Ronaldo with his club Celta Vigo, said. "He has had an amazing season in Spain, he's playing here with the same strength, which is why Portugal are in the semi-final. The main thing is trying to stop him getting the ball and scoring."
Chile, who won the Copa America in both 2015 and 2016, will present Portugal with their toughest test so far in Russia, yet the South Americans have yet to beat Portugal in three attempts with two defeats and a draw.
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Arturo Vidal has hit out at Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of Chile's Confederations Cup semi-final against Portugal, labelling the Real Madrid star "a smart a**e". Vidal was quoted as saying by Goal.com: "For me he does not exist. I have told my Bayern teammate Joshua Kimmich that we will meet again in the final."
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