The inaugural Nations League final presents Cristiano Ronaldo with the chance to personally secure silverware for Portugal for the first time – but he will have to get past Virgil van Dijk and the Netherlands if he is to get his hands on the trophy.
Ronaldo’s record in international finals pales into insignificance when compared to his formidable club record. The tears after the heartache on home soil at the hands of Greece in the Euro 2004 final were followed by a different challenge at Euro 2016, where injury cruelly ruled him out with just 25 minutes played.
Live UEFA Nations League
Portugal: Ronaldo absolutely took over against Switzerland and looks to be in midseason form rather than vacation form. He scored a brilliant free kick and took all of his shots really well. Not short of confidence, he enters in top form with Bernardo Silva also at a high level with an assist against the Swiss.
Netherlands: The Dutch didn’t finish particularly well against England but created a boatload of chances. They have so much speed down the wings that they can give Portugal trouble if they send their right back and left back forward. Playing on the road won’t be easy for the Dutch, but they have the defense to keep Ronaldo without a goal.
Portugal vs. Netherlands prediction
Portugal scores first, but the Dutch come back and take the title on a Memphis Depay winner.
Ronaldo still played his part in Paris, hobbling down the touchline and barking out instructions as Portugal secured their first victory in a major tournament, but you can be sure he was envious of Eder’s title-winning contribution in extra-time.Three years on, though, the stage is set for the five-time Ballon d’Or winner to steal the show, and form suggests it may well be third-time lucky after his sensational hat-trick against Switzerland sealed Portugal’s passage to the final.
The first ever Nations League final will be played on Sunday as the Estadio do Dragao as Portugal hosts Netherlands. The Portuguese got through to the final thanks to a 3-1 win over Switzerland on Wednesday, where Cristiano Ronaldo scored all three goals for his country. The Dutch beat England by the same score but needed extra time to do it, setting up as tasty a final as possible.
Here’s how you can watch the match and what to know:
Nations League final: Portugal vs. Netherlands
Date: Sunday, June 9
Time: 2:45 p.m. ET
Location: Estadio do Dragao
TV channel: ESPN
Streaming: fuboTV (Try for free)
Odds: Portugal -130 | Netherlands +110