Portugal defeat Netherlands to win second trophy in 3 years

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Hosts Portugal claimed their second trophy in three years by beating the Netherlands to win the inaugural Nations League.

Fernando Santos’ side triumphed at the 2016 European Championship and Goncalo Guedes’ second half strike gave Portugal a narrow victory in Porto which Santos said was evidence of their unity as a team.

“For the last five years, we have been an almost indestructible family who know what we are capable of doing,” he said. “We knew we could win this match.”

The victory was achieved through Guedes, the Valencia winger smashing in from the edge of the area following Bernardo Silva’s clever cutback, though Dutch goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen will be disappointed he did not keep the effort out.

The Dutch looked to get back into the game but Memphis Depay’s powerful header was well saved by Wolves number one Rui Patricio and ex-Middlesbrough midfielder Marten de Roon lashed over.

England finished third in the tournament after a victory on penalties over Switzerland in Guimaraes.

 

MATCH STATS

  • Portugal are the first European nation to host and win a final of a major competition since France beat Brazil 3-0 in the final of the 1998 World Cup.
  • The Netherlands have lost four of their last five finals in major international tournaments (three in the World Cup, once in the Nations League).
  • They remain winless against Portugal when playing them in Portugal, drawing two and losing four of their six such meetings.
  • Goncalo Guedes has been directly involved in five goals in his last eight appearances for Portugal (three goals and two assists).
  • No Portugal player has been directly involved in more goals than Bernardo Silva in the Nations League this season (3 – joint-most with Cristiano Ronaldo and Andre Silva), while he also made the most assists of any Portuguese player (2).
  • The Netherlands’ first shot in this game came in the 65th minute; by which time Portugal had already had 14 shots and opened the scoring.
  • Jasper Cillessen became the fifth goalkeeper to reach 50 international appearances for the Netherlands, after Edwin Van Der Sar (130), Hans Van Breukelen (73), Maarten Stekelenburg (58) and Gejus Van Der Meulen (54).
  • The Netherlands fielded the same starting XI in consecutive games for the first time since October 2014 (under Guus Hiddink).
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