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Smeghead Moderator
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And yet he is still learning...

Cristiano Ronaldo has admitted that Portugal were taught a footballing lesson during their defeat to Italy last night, while the Portuguese press has also highlighted the Azzurri superiority.

Italy produced an impressive display at the Letzigrund Stadium in Zurich, as goals from Luca Toni, Fabio Cannavaro and Fabio Quagliarella earned them a deserved 3-1 win.

Cristiano Ronaldo, who has been in sensational form in the English Premiership this season was one of the disappointments of the night, as he was marked out of the game by the Italian defence.

“It was an important lesson for us all,” said Ronaldo, who only really threatened with two long-range free-kicks.

The Portuguese press were damning in their verdict of their team’s display, and said they were lucky not to lose by a bigger scoreline.

“Only Ricardo Quaresma saved our honour. A poor performance and another defeat against Italy,” printed A Bola.

Portugal have not beaten Italy for 32 years, with their last victory coming way back in 1976 when Euro 84’ hero Nene scored twice in a 2-1 success.

“Italy exposed Portugal’s fragility,” Record said.

“The world champions gave a lesson in maturity to Scolari’s side. With less possession they dominated, scored three times and missed other chances.”

There is still some question regarding Ronaldo's big game mentality. I know he has scored 3 goals v Arsenal, played well in the Champions League quarter-final against Roma and played well for Portugal in the latter stages of the World Cup.

However, he has repeatedly struggled when up against Ashley Cole, hasn't really performed well against Liverpool or Chelsea and (like the rest of the team) went missing in the Champions League semi-final and FA Cup Final last season.

This isn't a dig at Ronaldo - just a reminder that he is still a young player and has room for improvement as he matures, which is, frankly, an exciting and frightening (for the opposition!) thought.
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