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05th Jun 2019

Incredible VAR twist as Portugal penalty cancelled as Switzerland awarded one of their own

Simon Lloyd

As far as VAR drama goes, it doesn’t get much better than this…

For a brief while on Wednesday night, it seemed Portugal had a great chance to double their lead against Switzerland in Porto, taking a giant leap towards the Uefa Nations League final in the process.

Leading through Cristiano Ronaldo’s first-half free-kick, they were awarded a penalty with little over ten minutes played of the second half.

Incredibly, however, the penalty was never taken.

Instead, referee Felix Brych decided to check a potential penalty decision at the other end of the field which had happened a few moments earlier.

After consulting one of the pitch-side monitors, he ruled that Nelson Semedo had fouled Steven Zuber. As a result, Portugal’s spot-kick was cancelled, and the Swiss were given the chance to equalise through one of their own.

Ricardo Rodriguez stepped up to take the penalty and scored, drawing Switzerland level and stunning the majority of those inside the Estádio do Dragão,

Fortunately for Portugal, Ronaldo wasn’t quite done. With minutes remaining, he was able to turn home a low cross from Bernardo Silva to restore the Portuguese lead with what proved to be the decisive goal.

Then, in stoppage time, he added his third, making absolutely sure of the victory.