Ronaldo inspires Portugal into the semifinals of Euro 2012

Updated: June 22, 2012

Portugal fans and neutrals hoping for a splash edition of the Cristiano Ronaldo roadshow had their appetite satisfied as he single-handedly steered his country into the Euro 2012 semi-finals by beating the Czech Republic 1-0.

Ronaldo showed the same kind of sparkle that saw the Portugal captain dominate play and claim a brace in his team’s 2-1 defeat of the Netherlands last Sunday – goals he had dedicated to his son, who turned two the same day.

So often maligned for failing to recapture his Real Madrid form when wearing the Portugal shirt, Ronaldo’s 79th-minute header took his Euro 2012 tally to three, making him joint top scorer with Germany’s Mario Gomez – plus Russia’s Alan Dzagoev and Croatia’s Mario Mandzukic, whose teams failed to advance from the group stage.

And he was delighted at sending the Portuguese into a semi-final against either titleholders Spain or France.

Tonight sees Germany take on Greece. Germany look set for a semi berth against a Greek side that certainly doesn’t deserve to be in the knock out stages.