Portugal enjoyed their biggest ever World Cup victory when they overwhelmed North Korea 7-0 in Group G on Monday to end the Asian side’s hopes.
Ronaldo got on the scoresheet at last as the Portuguese put themselves in prime position to accompany Brazil into the second round after a scintillating display of attacking football. Portugal coach Carlos Queiroz had said he would approach the game in three stages — win, score goals and then look at the standings — and his players followed the plan to the letter.
Goals by Raul Meireles in the first half, Simao Sabrosa, Hugo Almeida and Tiago in a seven-minute blitz early in the second, and further strikes by substitute Liedson, Ronaldo and Tiago again secured the win that took them on to four points.
“It was a great display, good goals, great attitude. We needed a moment like this, a well-played game so that the motivation and confidence can be even bigger now,” said Queiroz.
“It’s a big result, but it's another game and we still haven’t won anything yet.”
“Now we have to think of qualifying for the next round, one game at a time, try to win the next one with the same ambition with which we approached this game.”
Portugal are now two points behind already-qualified Brazil, who they meet in their final game, but more importantly have boosted their goal difference so much that Ivory Coast need to score a hatful in their final game against the Koreans.