Portugal vs Turkey – LIVE Reddit Soccer 24/03/2022
Portugal is up for their last chance to qualify for the FIFA World Cup 2022 Qatar as they host Turkey at the Estadio do Dragao in the first of their two must-win games. The winner of Portugal vs Turkey game will then go on to face the winner of the Italy vs North Macedonia match, in a bid to fix a place in the World Cup roster in Qatar. Football fans will have all eyes towards Portugal’s match as the superstar footballer Cristiano Ronaldo looks to rescue the team, with time running out of his hands.
No one knows if Ronaldo will play in the next World Cup at the age of 41, and he will be desperate to lead Portugal to a victory on Thursday to avoid one of the biggest setbacks of his celebratory career. However, the team has an uphill task ahead of them as defenders Pepe and Ruben Dias are out of the match. Pepe is out due to Covid-19, while Dias is out because of an injury.
At the same time, goalkeeper Anthony Lopes, defender Nelson Semedo and midfielders Renato Sanches and Rúben Neves are also out due to injuries, while Joao Cancelo sits out due to suspension. Turkey, on the other hand, have no reported injuries and coach Stefan Kuntz will have a full-strength squad going into the important match. Playing against each other, Portugal have defeated Turkey in six matches, while Turkey trail the head to head record with only two wins.
Football fans in India can enjoy live action from the FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifier between Portugal and Turkey by tuning into the Sony Ten 2 SD and Sony Ten 2 HD channels. Fans will also be able to stream the match live on the SonyLiv app and Jio TV. The match is slated to begin at 1:15 AM IST on Friday.
Meanwhile, football fans in UK can tune into the Sky Sports Premier League to watch the match on their TVs, while it will be live-streamed on the Sky Go app. On the other hand, soccer fans in the US can enjoy the match on ESPN 2, while it will be streamed on fubo TV, Sling TV and the ESPN website. The match is scheduled to start at 7:40 PM GMT in the UK and at 3.45 PM ET / 12.45 PM PT in the US.
Portugal fans cannot forget the name Aleksandar Mitrovic quickly enough, as with the Euro 2016 champions and Serbia level pegging at 1-1 in their final group encounter, the Fulham forward dramatically headed home in the 90th minute to send his side into the finals.
A goalless stalemate with the Republic of Ireland three days before that 2-1 defeat also proved costly in Portugal’s bid to secure a simple route to Qatar, with Santos’s side now at a real risk of failing to qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1998.
A potential meeting with Italy in the playoff final could follow for Portugal – assuming that the European champions can navigate their way past North Macedonia in the other Path C semi-final – meaning that at least one of the two European heavyweights will be watching on from home later this year.
A record of 17 points and a +11 goal difference means that Portugal boast the best group record out of any UEFA nation in the playoffs, but defeat to Serbia at the Estadio da Luz marked their first home loss in World Cup Qualifying since 2008.
However, Santos’s side had won 10 on the bounce at home in qualification before Mitrovic and Dusan Tadic put them to the sword in November, although their upcoming opponents have enjoyed quite the revival since their Euro 2020 capitulation.
Despite taking maximum points from their final three fixtures in the group phase, it was too little too late for Turkey to pip the Netherlands to the top spot in Group G, as Stefan Kuntz’s side seek just a third-ever appearance at the World Cup finals.
Since crashing out of Euro 2020 without a single point to their name, the Crescent-Stars have only suffered one defeat in seven games since – although it was a 6-1 humbling at the hands of the Dutch – and they marched to successive wins over Latvia, Gibraltar and Montenegro to round off Group G.
Not since collecting bronze medals at the 2002 tournament have Turkey plied their trade in the World Cup finals, and Kuntz’s side are facing an uphill battle to end that agonising 20-year wait here, with the talent in their ranks not exactly gelling on a consistent basis.
Furthermore, only the hapless Gibraltar (43) conceded more goals than Turkey (16) in Group G, although they have found the back of the net in every one of their World Cup 2022 Qualifying games so far and may fancy their chances against a depleted Portuguese defence.
However, this week’s hosts have come up trumps in six of their eight meetings with Turkey down the years, but the most recent clash between the two sides back in 2012 ended in a 3-1 friendly victory for the Crescent-Stars, with Umut Bulut on the scoresheet twice.