Portugal’s coach Fernando Santos says Cristiano Ronaldo’s two-goal display against Hungary proves he has shaken off a poor start to return to his best at Euro 2016.
Ronaldo scored a pair of brilliant goals in Lyon on Wednesday to go down in European Championship history as the first player to score at four finals.
Portugal came from behind three times for a 3-3 draw which allowed them to scrape into the last 16 to face Croatia in Lens on Saturday, although they will only have two days’ rest.
Ronaldo, Portugal’s most-capped player ever with 128 appearances, rescued his country and wracked up another record by making a 17th appearance at a Euro finals, overtaking France’s Liliam Thuram and Dutch goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar.
“This is what Cristiano is all about, because he’s a winner and a scorer, he feeds on goals,” said Santos.
“This will have increased his confidence levels. He’s a confident player anyway, but this will have boosted him for the next game against Croatia.”
The 31-year-old opened his account in style with a deft backheel on 50 minutes, then netted with a powerful header 12 minutes later as he twice equalised at the Stade de Lyon.
Ronaldo had struggled as Portugal drew their other Group F games against minnows Iceland and Austria, when he hit the post with a second-half penalty on Saturday.
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