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Ronaldo urges Portugal to believe amid frustration

Published: Saturday 18 June 2016, 23.00CET
It was a bittersweet night for Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo, who insisted "we need to continue to believe", while Marcel Koller saluted a "great team performance" by Austria.
Ronaldo urges Portugal to believe amid frustration
Cristiano Ronaldo reacts after his penalty miss ©Getty Images
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Published: Saturday 18 June 2016, 23.00CET

Ronaldo urges Portugal to believe amid frustration

It was a bittersweet night for Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo, who insisted "we need to continue to believe", while Marcel Koller saluted a "great team performance" by Austria.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal captain
[Breaking Luís Figo's Portugal appearance record] is a reason to be proud. It was a goal to be the most-capped international player and to be the national team's top scorer. But I'm a bit sad because this wasn't the way I wanted to break this record. We wanted to win. This was not how I envisaged it.

We had a lot of chances and we did well, but we weren't able to finish. I also missed some chances – a penalty and some others. But that's part of football.

We need to continue to believe, and once again thank the Portuguese fans who were here and also the ones who were supporting us from elsewhere. I'm sure Portugal will give their best in the next match, and if you try you'll always make it.

Ronaldo proud but frustrated

We, the players, need to think that it's still possible; if we win, we qualify. And also the Portuguese people, the fans who love Portugal, they also have to believe. The bad won't last forever, so we need to believe that things will get better.

Fernando Santos, Portugal coach
I think we're having a tough time but we can't wallow in misery. There is a 'final' to play on 22 June. We're going to focus on that and accentuate the positives. We can't think about the missed chances, fair or unfair, this is football. The next match is a final for us.

It's complicated. Looking at today's game, for the first ten minutes the teams were trying to work each other out. I thought Austria would try to attack a bit more but they didn't; they had fast counterattacks instead.

But we started taking control and Austria tried to soak that up. It made the game different from the Iceland one [which finished 1-1]. I told the players we were playing OK but at the beginning of the second half the game was a bit more balanced.

Yet we had more chances again, we hit the post – again – but that's it. Stats are nothing. Fair or unfair is a moot point. Unlike against Iceland, we didn't score or concede.We are a game away from really clicking. It was another positive match but we need to win the next game and then the team will grow.

Marcel Koller, Austria coach
We can't still dream about our qualification campaign. That's been over for a long time and we have to focus on what's in front of us. In the finals there's no weak opponents and we have to react accordingly.

Alaba delight at a point for Austria

With this point we're still alive. Now the spirit has to be different; you need self-belief to be able to play well. [Stefan] Ilsanker and [Julian] Baumagartlinger, [Marko] Arnautović and [Marcel] Sabitzer for example were very committed in their defensive work.

Robert Almer has always played well for Austria. When we started four and a half years ago he wasn't playing for his club, but he showed his qualities. He anticipates well and had a lot to do today.

I'm happy – he was injured before the EURO and we weren't sure if he would make it, but he has plenty of quality. He played fantastically today and contributed to a great team performance. They fought very hard and we definitely had a bit of luck with the penalty.

João Moutinho, Portugal midfielder and man of the match
We were on top, we were the better team but we couldn't translate that superiority into goals. We wanted to win, our individual quality was good, but I'm sure all team-mates would trade that for a victory.

Moutinho: Everything is still possible

In both games we had enough chances but weren't able to score more. We still believe in our potential. We have to take our opportunities and when we do, we'll win by more than one goal.

All our players are used to this kind of situation [the Hungary game]; it's the kind of situation we enjoy. We have to give everything. We'll try our best to win and if we keep doing what we're doing, I'm sure we'll reach the last 16.

Robert Almer, Austria goalkeeper
We're all delighted because we wanted a point today. It was a very hard game. I'm happy I could help, especially in these circumstances, but it's important for everyone to have taken a point.

Now we have to enjoy this point and beat Iceland. It was always clear we would have to win one game and we'll try that against Iceland. Our organisation was good, and we had two or three chances and if we had taken them then it would have been difficult for Portugal.

We can celebrate a bit, then we have to focus on Iceland. These are nice moments in football, you have to enjoy them, but there's not much time to the next game. I'm experienced, I know where to rank this result. However, we have to invest all our energy against Iceland.

Last updated: 12/07/16 17.38CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/season=2016/matches/round=2000448/match=2017961/postmatch/quotes/index.html#ronaldo+urges+portugal+believe