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Ronaldo's record goal scripts Portugal win

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"He's very happy to be here with us and every match it's a privilege for us Portuguese to have a player such as him".

That was Portugal's only defeat against African opposition at any World Cup and the bookies have Ronaldo and chums as fairly heavy favourites to triumph today.

In 1986 World Cup, Morocco thrashed Portugal by 3-1.

- Morocco had 68 per cent possession in their 1-0 defeat to Iran, the most by a losing team in a World Cup match since June 2010, when Spain had 73 per cent possession against Switzerland but lost 1-0.

The FIFA World Cup 2018 Match-18 between Portugal vs Morocco starts at 05:30 PM IST (On Wednesday).

Coach Carlos Queiroz concedes Iran now face one of the biggest challenges in their World Cup history, but maintains they can "make the impossible possible". But they were made to work extremely hard by Morocco in the end.

Questioned about his chances of being picked, Silva said: "I do not know how to respond, this is the job of the mister [coach], he knows who plays".

The Morocco defender Nabil Dirar added: "Tomorrow will be a final for us, an important battle".

The win followed Russia's 5-0 thrashing of Saudi Arabia in the first game of the tournament.

The Saudis´ preparations were jolted by a mid-air mishap on Monday when the plane carrying them to Rostov suffered a fire in one of its engines. Arriving in Russian Federation with a point to prove having scored just three times overall in three previous tournaments, he doubled that tally in one game against Spain.

Aside from rubbing salt in the wounds of their Iberian rivals following the sacking of Spain coach Julen Lopetegui, Ronaldo's late equaliser puts Portugal in a strong position to qualify for the knockout stage if they beat Morocco, in just the second meeting between the two nations.

Tuesday´s other Group H clash saw Japan come out surprise winners against 10-man Colombia after midfielder Carlos Sanchez received the tournament´s first red card for a handball minutes into the game.