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Cristiano Ronaldo did not touch Bruno Fernandes’s cross which led to Portugal’s first goal in their 2-0 win over Uruguay on Monday night, according to ball manufacturer Adidas and its “highly accurate” technology.
Ronaldo wheeled away celebrating passionately after leaping towards Fernandes’s cross from the left side, which bounced through the box and into the far corner of the goal. That was enough to convince Fifa to initially award the goal to Ronaldo – it would have been his ninth World Cup goal equalling the great Eusebio’s Portuguese record.
But Adidas’s technology showed Ronaldo did not touch the ball, and it was later revised as Fernandes’s strike.
An Adidas statement read: “In the match between Portugal and Uruguay, using the Connected Ball Technology housed in adidas’s Al Rihla Official Match Ball, we are able to definitively show no contact on the ball from Cristiano Ronaldo for the opening goal in the game.
“No external force on the ball could be measured as shown by the lack of ‘heartbeat’ in our measurements and in the attached graphic. The 500Hz IMU sensor inside the ball allows us to be highly accurate in our analysis.”
Johannes Holzmuller, the director of football technology and innovation at Fifa, said: “This technology is the culmination of three years of dedicated research and testing by Fifa and our partner adidas.”
According to Spanish show El Chiringuito TV, the Portuguese FA are appealing against the decision in the hope of crediting Ronaldo with the goal.
Fernandes, whose relationship with Ronaldo has come under scrutiny since the latter departed Manchester United acrimoniously last week, said after the match: “I don’t think it really matters who scored the goal at this point. The feeling I had at the time was that Cristiano touched the ball. I was passing the ball to him. But the important thing was that we won tonight against a very tough opponent.
“The importance of us being first in the group includes us winning the next game, which would allow us to come out of the group undefeated. That is what we want. We have a very organised team ahead of us on Friday, and our objective is to take it match by match.”
Portugal sit atop Group H with six points and are through to the knockout rounds with a game to spare.