Portugal qualify to the quarter-final

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Portugal became the first team to reach the Euro 2008 quarter-finals by defeating the Czech Republic 3-1 in an entertaining march.

Portugal was the main favorite in Group A and fulfilled the expectations by qualifying from the group phase with one game to play.

Their win puts them on six points and guarantees one spot in the knockout stages as top of the group, even if they fail to beat Switzerland in the final match.

It took Portugal just eight minutes to make the breakthrough via Deco, turning in a rebound from close range after Cristiano Ronaldo and Nuno Gomes exchanging passes in the area.

Libor Sionko equalised for the Czechs in the 17th minute, but Ronaldo scored on 63 minutes to hand his team a 2-1 lead.

Substitute Ricardo Quaresma scored an easy tap in from Ronaldo's pass in injury time.

Czech Republic worked hard to deny space for Ronaldo, in fact it was very difficult for him to penetrate the Czech defense.

But it was not all Portugal domination and Karel Brückner's side remained dangerous - especially from set-pieces.

Brückner brought Milan Baroš, top scorer at Euro 2004, to replace Jan Koller in the front line.

Portugal now are among the best eight squads in Europe while the Czechs will now expect something from their final match against Turkey if they want to reach the knockout stages.

Czech Republic1 - 3Portugal
Libor Sionko 17Deco 8
Cristiano Ronaldo 63
Ricardo Quaresma 90+1

Czech Republic: 1-Petr Cech; 2-Zdenek Grygera, 21-Tomas Ujfalusi, 22-David Rozehnal, 6-Marek Jankulovski; 7-Libor Sionko, 3-Jan Polak, 17-Marek Matejovsky (11-Stanislav Vlcek 68), 4-Tomas Galasek (9-Jan Koller 73), 20-Jaroslav Plasil (14-David Jarolim 85); 15-Milan Baroš
Portugal: 1-Ricardo; 4-José Bosingwa, 15-Pepe, 16-Ricardo Carvalho, 2-Paulo Ferreira; 8-Petit, 20-Deco, 10-João Moutinho (5-Fernando Meira 75); 11-Simão (17-Ricardo Quaresma 80), 21-Nuno Gomes (9-Hugo Almeida 79), 7-Cristiano Ronaldo
Referee: Kyros Vassaras (Greece)


Shots on target :2-11
Shots off target :7-5
Ball possession (%) :41-59
Corner kicks :6-6
Offsides :0-3
Fouls :16-15
Yellow cards :1-1
Red cards :0-0

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