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Portugal find no way past FYROM

Published: Saturday 26 May 2012, 20.45CET
Portugal 0-0 FYROM
Cristiano Ronaldo had the best chances for Paulo Bento's experimental lineup but the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia held firm.
by Hugo Pietra
Portugal find no way past FYROM
Portugal midfielder Miguel Veloso (top) vies with FYROM's Nikola Gligorov ©Getty Images
Published: Saturday 26 May 2012, 20.45CET

Portugal find no way past FYROM

Portugal 0-0 FYROM
Cristiano Ronaldo had the best chances for Paulo Bento's experimental lineup but the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia held firm.

Portugal were made to settle for a goalless draw in the first of their two warm-up games for UEFA EURO 2012 as the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia held firm at the Estádio Municipal de Leiria.

Paulo Bento's lineup included a number of fringe players, including goalkeeper Beto, defender Rolando, midfielder Rúben Micael and winger Ricardo Quaresma, but it was Real Madrid CF stalwart Cristiano Ronaldo who most caught the eye for the hosts. His efforts were not sufficient to trouble a well-organised FYROM side, however, and Portugal will be hoping for a better outcome when they tackle Turkey next Saturday in their final outing before UEFA EURO 2012.

Eager for an early goal, Portugal went on the attack from the start and Ronaldo almost broke the deadlock on ten minutes when Ronaldo's free-kick sailed narrowly off-target. He and his team-mates were then given a scare when Stefan Spirovski blasted a powerful effort wide six minutes later, but the Madrid forward took matters into his own hands again when he tried his luck from outside the area shortly after.

Ronaldo continued to provide the greatest attacking threat in the first half and Portugal carried on in the same vein after the break, only for their forays forward to run aground against FYROM's sturdy back line. Bento introduced the likes of Raul Meireles, Nani and Hugo Almeida as he sought a breakthrough, but although the hosts battled away until the end, a goal proved elusive.

Last updated: 26/05/12 20.53CET

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