Euro 2012: Portugal boss lauds team ahead of Ronaldo

Portugal coach Paulo Bento chose to praise his team's unity rather than two-goal hero Cristiano Ronaldo after they reached the Euro 2012 last eight.

Ronaldo scored both goals in a brilliant individual performance as Portugal beat Netherlands 2-1 to set up a meeting with Czech Republic.

"I am proud of what we did as a team," said Bento.

"We did that brilliantly with a great united organisation that we have had in the three games we have played."

Rafael van der Vaart put the Dutch ahead before Portugal took a grip of the game, with captain Ronaldo scoring twice as well going close with a number of chances and helping create openings for his team-mates.

The victory meant Portugal finished second in Group B behind a German side they lost to in their opening game before beating Denmark and Netherlands.

"The individual effort of players is not important," Bento said.

"We have an identity, we have certain ideas and then the players put that into practice.

"They did what we asked them to do. Today we can even talk about some brilliance. It was the best game we have played so far, apart from the first 12 minutes.

"We have been loyal to our spirit and that is what we are proud of."

Portugal will play the Czechs in Warsaw on Thursday and Ronaldo said: "We have succeeded in our great aim, which was to qualify for the quarter-finals.

"Now we have to play against the Czech Republic, which is going to be hard, but we'll do our best."

Top Stories