Portugal and Ghana have faced each other once and the former defeated the latter 2-1 in the 2014 World Cup. Cristiano Ronaldo will feature in his fifth FIFA World Cup tournament o Thursday as Portugal are scheduled to take on the likes of Ghana in their opening FIFA World Cup 2022 fixture . Portugal and Ghana are placed in the Group H alongside Uruguay and South Korea.
Apart from Group E that features Germany, Spain, Japan and Costa Rica, Group H is considered to be the group of death in this World Cup edition. Portugal won three and lost two of their six UEFA Nations League games and scored 11 goals joint second-most in the League A. On the other hand, Ghana won three of their last five games and will look to continue their good form.
The only other time these two teams met, Ronaldo scored an 80th minute winner as Portugal emerged with a 2-1 victory, but it wasn’t enough as both teams were eliminated from the 2014 World Cup group stage behind Germany and the United States.
Now, instead of closing group stage play, the two will begin it with an eye towards setting themselves up for a big knockout stage push, knowing Uruguay and South Korea also loom in a very difficult group.
The staggering array of talented players in the Portuguese squad means they are among the favourites to lift the World Cup, although question marks remain over their manager’s approach.
Fernando Santos seems to prefer a more solid setup which does not necessarily get the best out of his brilliant attacking players, although there seems little doubt that the winners of Euro 2016 should be able to kick off their World Cup campaign with a win.
Five of Portugal’s last seven competitive fixtures have seen less than three goals and backing a repeat on Thursday could be of interest.
We say: Portugal 2-1 Ghana
This has all the makings of a sticky opening match for Portugal, with Ghana proving a tough nut to crack defensively in recent matches and possessing plenty of youthful talent in the final third.
The Selecao faithful should not expect their side to stroll to victory in Doha, but with so many talented attacking options at their disposal, we still have faith in Portugal to grind out a narrow win and get off to the perfect start.
Portugal:- Costa; Cancelo, Pepe, Dias, Guerreiro; Neves, Carvalho, Fernandes; B. Silva, Ronaldo, Leao
Ghana:- Ati Zigi; Lamptey, Amartey, Djiku, Baba; Partey, Abdul Samed; Sulemana, Kudus, J. Ayew; Williams
Tip 1:- Portugal To win this match – Yes
Tip 2:- Ronaldo To score first – Yes
Tip 3:- Portugal To score first – Yes
Tip 4:- Both team to score first – Yes
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