Ronaldo gifts shirt to young fan during Portugal's WC Qualifier | Watch
- Portugal were held to a 0-0 draw vs the Republic of Ireland in Dublin on Thursday
- Portugal need to avoid defeat against Serbia in their final game to directly qualify for the 2022 World Cup
- Portugal and Serbia are level on 17 points each in Group A
Although Cristiano Ronaldo could not help secure Portugal’s qualification to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar against the Republic of Ireland on Thursday, he did win the heart of a young fan. Following the goalless draw at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin, Ronaldo made a young girl’s dream come true when she ran onto the pitch, hoping to spend a moment with her footballing hero.
The Portuguese superstar removed his shirt and gave her a hug before heading back to the tunnel, with his young fan moved to tears by the gesture. Watch the moment here:
While the lucky fan will remember this moment for the rest of her life, it was a night to forget for Ronaldo and his team as they were held to a goalless draw by the home side. Central defender Pepe was shown a red card eight minutes from time, as things got from bad to worse for the Euro 2016 champions.
It was the 14th red card of Pepe’s career, which the former Real Madrid and Porto defender got for elbowing striker Callum Robinson.
Meanwhile, it was a fairly even game, reflected in the possession stats with Portugal controlling 51% of the ball compared to Ireland’s 49%. The two teams also had equal number of shots, with Portugal having three on target compared to Ireland’s two.
Fernando Santo’s side will now have to avoid a draw in the final group game against Serbia in order to stay top of Group A and directly qualify for the World Cup. Portugal are currently level on points with Serbia and are only above them on goal difference. Both teams have won five and drawn two of their seven games so far.
The all-important final game will be played at the Estadio da Luz in Lisbon on Sunday.