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Ronaldo nets 100th international goal as Portugal down Sweden

FOOTBALL By Reuters | September 9th 2020
Sweden v Portugal - Friends Arena, Stockholm, Sweden September 8, 2020 Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates after scoring. TT News Agency/Janerik Henriksson via REUTERS

Cristiano Ronaldo rattled home a superb first-half free kick to become only the second male player to score 100 international goals as Portugal outclassed 10-man Sweden 2-0 in their Nations League A Group 3 game on Tuesday.

Portugal's captain scored with a dipping set-piece effort just before halftime to join Ali Daei, who netted 109 times for Iran, on a century of goals.

The 35-year-old was a constant threat to Sweden's back line in the early exchanges, hanging on the shoulder of the last defender before bursting forward to beat the offside trap, but Sweden goalkeeper Robin Olsen was equal to the task.

That all changed when Gustav Svensson received his second yellow card and was sent packing after a reckless challenge on Joao Moutinho on the edge of his own box just before halftime.

Ronaldo stepped up and smashed a dipping effort beyond the despairing dive of Olsen and just under the crossbar before breaking into a wide smile as he celebrated with his team mates.

Sweden were struggling to contain the visitors and Ronaldo struck again in the 73rd minute with another curling, dipping effort, this time from open play, to leave himself just eight goals short of Daei's international scoring record.

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