World Cup 2014: Portugal score last-minute equaliser, stay alive

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Manaus (Brazil), June 23: Portugal made an unbelievable comeback into the World Cup 2014 when they scored a last minute equaliser against the USA at the Arena da Amazônia here on Sunday. The match ended 2-2.

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Portugal's No. 10 Silvestre Varela converted a clean pass from Christiano Ronaldo through a header to keep his team's chances for qualifying for the Round of 16 alive. The goal came with just thirty seconds remaining for the match to end.

The Portuguese, however, started off in style with Nani putting them ahead in the fifth minute. It seemed as if the Europeans were past the nightmare that they had faced against the Germans in their first match but Jermaine Jones brought the Americans back into the contest in the 64th minute, thanks to an unstoppable shot that left the entire Portuguese defence stunned.

Varella scored the equaliser for the Europeans to help them live another day

The Americans then took a crucial lead in the 81st minute when captain Clint Dempsey, who scored the fifth fastest goal in the World Cup against Ghana the other day, chested the ball into an empty net.
An injured Christiano Ronaldo looked a shadow of his prime and was seen barely defending at times. He had a few chances of scoring but looked constrained in his movements. It was, however, him who made a huge contribution in Portugal's all-crucial equaliser.

Germany top Group G at the moment with four points (the US also have four points but a worse goal difference). Both Ghana and Portugal have one point each but Ghana are ahead because of a better goal difference.

Portugal will have an uphill task for qualifying for the next round from here. If Germany and USA game ends in a draw, both Ghana and Portugal will crash out. But even if the score of that match gives them another chance, Portugal will have to win by a huge margin against the Ghanaians, who put up a brave show on Saturday to draw with Germany after taking a lead.

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