KHARKIV — For all the talk of Cristiano Ronaldo not producing in big games, Ronaldo may have the last laugh as he would silence his critics in a big way.
Ronaldo, who would score only three goals in his last 15 international matches, would score two goals in helping Portugal eliminate Holland from Euro 2012, 2-1.
The Dutch would strike first on a strike from forward Rafael van der Vaart at the 11th minute to give the Netherlands an early 1-0 lead.
The second leading scorer in La Liga with 60 goals, Ronaldo would score his first goal on a nice pass into the middle of the Dutch zone from Joao Pereira, at the 28th minute to pull the Portguese level at 1-1.
Ronaldo would score the game-winner on a long pass forward from former Manchester United teammate, Nani into the Dutch end of the field. Ronaldo would cut towards the goal and fire a shot past Portuguese goalkeeper, Maarten Stekelenburg.
With the loss, it is the first time that Holland has lost all three games in a European tournament and also ends Holland’s streak of reaching the knockout round in six straight Euro tournaments—which was the longest active streak of all teams.
The loss also raises questions on the job status of Dutch manager, Bert van Marwijk.
van Marwijk, who would be the constant subject of questions after not decisively naming his starting forward, must now answer for the poor form of a Dutch side that looked inept, un-focused and more of a selfish collection of individuals.
In the eyes of many, Holland was the clear underachiever in Euro 2012, despite having talent in the form of Robin van Persie, van der Vaart, Arjen Robben and Wesley Snejider, the Dutch face more questions about their ability to play as a collective team than answers.
For Ronaldo, he has no such worries, as he would answer his critics loud and clear.
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