World Cup 2014: Day 5, including reaction after Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal lose 4-0 to Germany, Iran and Nigeria draw 0-0 and USA beat Ghana late on - Live coverage - The Independent

World Cup 2014: Day 5, including reaction after Cristiano Ronaldo's Portugal lose 4-0 to Germany, Iran and Nigeria draw 0-0 and USA beat Ghana late on

Welcome to The Independent's coverage of day five as-it-happened from the World Cup in Brazil with Marc Williams and Samuel Stevens. After a strong Germany side benefited from Pepe's sending off to defeat Portugal 4-0, Iran and Nigeria shared the spoils in a 0-0 draw before the USA sealed a dramatic 2-1 victory over Ghana in Natal...

  • Hello everyone, I'm Marc Williams, and welcome along to the Independent's live coverage of Day 5 of this summer's World Cup finals. 

    Martin Kaymer won the US Open last night, England's cricketers are in a ding-dong derby with Sri Lanka at Lords and Grigor Dimitrov claimed victory at Queens yesterday signalling that Wimbledon is just around the corner! Am I missing something?? Oh yes, the football!!

    Nine goals, red cards, controversy, thrilling action, wonder strikes and da da daaa goal line technology actually doing what it's supposed to do and all that was just yesterday! Four days in and what a start to this World Cup summer! 

    Last night, Lionel Messi took centre stage at the Maracana and produced arguably the best goal of the tournament so far. Today, we have Cristaino Ronaldo, we are so spoilt! His Portugal team take on the Germans at 5pm our time but will a slightly injured CR7 be able to live up to his reputation like Messi did!

    Then two other days tonight, Iran v Nigeria at 8pm and USA v Ghana at 11pm and I'm sure plenty of action in those two games as well. This is the World Cup that just keeps on giving!

    On your marks, get set, go!! 

    6/16/2014 9:58:31 AM


  • First up today, we have good old Wayne Rooney. 

    Some say he was poor on Saturday night, some say he was OK, some say drop him against Uruguay, some say not a chance. 

    If there's one player who gets us talking more than anyone else, it's Wazza! But now he has had his own say...

    Rooney has come out and said that he does not take his England starting place for granted, never has and that he works hard every day to keep it. 

    Sam Wallace, live from Rio, sums up the words from our main man and you lot can make your own minds up, I'm staying out of it!

    Asked whether he expected to play as a matter of course for England, Rooney said that was not the case. “I don’t expect to play,” he said. “I work hard. I want to play.

    He denied that he had taken his place for granted. “I’ve never felt that,” he said. “I don’t know why you said that. Why would I feel my place in the team is guaranteed? I work hard to try and get into that team. I have never said my place is guaranteed.


    6/16/2014 10:16:05 AM


  • In this year's World Cup we will be treated to watching two of the greatest players to have ever played the game. Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi are two true legends and will go down in the history books as so and can both add to their legacy with a good performance in Brazil.

    But, what about everyone else? Are there any others we can pop in that catorgary? Luis Suarez perhaps?

    Well, not according to Roy Hodgson.

    England meet up with the Liverpool ace on Thursday night but our boss has played down the Uruguayan's reputation saying he needs to do a lot more to be considered a great. 

    When asked whether Suarez belonged in the same "world-class" bracket as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, the England manager said: "I think he will only be at that level when he shows it on this particular stage.

    "He has got the potential. He is a wonderful footballer. But if you are really going to put him up there with (Diego) Maradona, Pele, (Franz) Beckenbauer and (Johan) Cruyff, and (Andrea) Pirlo, this is the stage you have got to do it on really.


    6/16/2014 10:28:48 AM
  • A quick check in with Twitter for the first time today and it's only Luis bloody Figo! Good luck indeed!




    6/16/2014 10:33:51 AM


  • Rooney from the left? Rooney up the middle? Rooney in the false-nine position? Rooney up top on his own? Rooney in goal? Rooney back home in Crozteth?

    So many questions, such little time. In every major tournament that roles around our number 10 comes under the spotlight unlike any one else, I guess that is because secretly, deep down, we all really love him and want him to do well. 

    Sam Wallace, our chief football writer live from Rio, has his say about the whole matter, do you agree?

    Rooney has to play against Uruguay on Thursday. He has 39 goals for England, the same number, incidentally, as Luis Suarez has scored for Uruguay. It may be that this World Cup does not yield  No 40, which would take him level fourth with Michael Owen in the all-time list, but it is not the time to abandon a player who still has it in him to win matches for England.

    6/16/2014 10:42:32 AM
  • We've put up our daily poll at the top of this page. Today's question, will England escape Group D and make it into the next round? Have your vote and we'll sum it all up a bit later in the day...
    6/16/2014 10:45:26 AM



  • Wayne Rooney doesn't just get us lot talking over here in Blighty but all the big guns come out of the woodwork to have their own says too, including the Special One himself, Jose Mourinho!

    The Chelsea boss has said what many of us were thinking, that Rooney is wasted out on the left.

    Roy went with Wazza out wide and to be fair, Rooney put in a peach of a cross from that wide position to set up Daniel Sturridge's equaliser against Italy.

    Have a gander at what Jose reckons about our key conundrum. Back to Portugal you go now Jose, keep enjoying your hols. 

    Now Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho has given his thoughts on the matter, stating that the left of the pitch is not the "best position" for the forward who "loses a bit of his danger" when not playing through the middle.

    6/16/2014 10:55:57 AM
  • Don't forget, keep up-to-date with everything from around the World Cup with us here at the Independent! Plenty going on, plenty to enjoy!





    6/16/2014 10:58:43 AM
  • On that note, let's leave England alone for a while and let them enjoy their Xboxs and PS4s for a while. A whole load of thrilling action yesterday and plenty more on the way today, no doubt about it.

    The Swiss got a dramatic late winner over Ecuador, France put down some marker with a superb 3-0 win over Honduras and Messi inspired Argentina to a victory over Bosnia. All good games, all very different and shed loads to talk about across the lot of them. 

    Today three more! Game on!
    6/16/2014 11:03:22 AM
  • One final thing from England just quick and we're winning something! England top the table for passing percentages in the opposition half. Not bad at all!


    6/16/2014 11:06:35 AM


  • Messi, Messi, Messi, goal, goal, goal!! The main man produced one heck of a goal last night but his Argentina side didn't exactly look like world beaters against Bosnia, did they?

    Campagnaro and Rodriguez were both woeful and shipped off at halftime, Aguero was mostly ineffective and Messi himself did nothing for the first hour or so before his goal. 

    So, all over for Argentina? Not a chance! They didn't play well but won and that good old cliche stands, that's the mark of champions!

    Messi, the captain and talisman, said after the game his team must get better and they must!

    Messi's trademark run and strike will go down as one of the great World Cup goals, but the Argentina captain admitted he was relieved the team had secured a 2-1 win in the Maracana after a disappointing first half.

    6/16/2014 11:12:46 AM



  • Was Lionel Messi's effort the best goal of the World Cup so far?
    RVP got a belter, Arjen Robben did too and Claudio Marchisio's against England wasn't bad either (I can say that now, two days later, still hurts though).

    Messi's was a goodun, no two ways about it. With all that pressure on Messi, all the expectation, all the burden, to produce a piece of magic like that takes real nerve and class. 

    After the game, the great man puffed out his checks and said how relieved he was to have got off the mark in this tounrmanet. 

    Plenty more to come? Time will tell…

    Messi was also surprisingly frank about that: “a big relief”, he said of the strike. You could sense that from the celebration, as he let out a primal roar. If it would be obvious to liken it to Diego Maradona’s famous response to his goal against Greece in 1994, it is now a fair expectation that he begins to kick on, and potentially replicate his legendary predecessor’s performances in 1986.

    6/16/2014 11:21:41 AM
  • Twitter is still purring after the greatness from Messi last night!


    6/16/2014 11:23:52 AM
  • We're running two polls today, you lucky bunch! So have your say about what goal you reckon has been best so far, RVP or Messi...
    6/16/2014 11:27:53 AM

  • Bow down to me! 


    After Messi's brilliance last night, it's over to you CR7. Portugal are a one man team? Agree? I'm not so sure but the weight of responsibility on Cristiano Ronaldo is huge and the hopes of his national rest on his perfectly sculptured shoulders. 

    He has had one heck of a season with Real Madrid, won the Champions League and there are even rumours of 'CR7 - The Movie' on the horizon. 

    He has shaken off a slight knock but can he do the business? He has declared himself fit enough to play and how his country needs him tonight. Germany are the opponents and that is some tough game to have first up. No easing back to full fitness for Ronny.

    Cristiano Ronaldo says he has "nothing to prove" at the World Cup as his Portugal side prepare for their opening game against Germany.
    The Ballon d'Or winner has been struggling with knee and thigh injuries recently but is expected to captain Paulo Bento's side in Salvador later today.


    6/16/2014 11:37:32 AM

  • How big is Germany's expectation, thisss big! 

    It would be ever so easy to just concentrate all our focus to that one man, Ronaldo! But, the Germans would certainly have something to say about that.

    Muller, Podolski, Draxler, Gotze, Ozil, Kroos, Schurrle, that is some roster and that's just a few of em.

    Germany haven't quite done what they should have at recent tournaments and now the country is calling for better. 

    Manuel Neuer has said that this summer's build-up has seen an increase in pressure on his side and that the longing for a trophy is building and building in Germany.

    They kick-off against Portugal at 5pm, just over four hours away…


    “In Germany, the expectation rises as the tournaments go by,” admitted the Bayern Munich player, who hopes it can spur the team to achieve great things.
    “As far as I am concerned, I need that kind of pressure. I like these large tournaments – they’re the greatest in football history and I believe we are a country that can get the best out of ourselves in a tournament environment. We shouldn’t see it as negative pressure but use fans’ expectations to inspire us.

    6/16/2014 11:45:07 AM


  • How about a little match preview for the clash of titans tonight, then? Sound good? 

    We've had some top games opening the groups already, Spain 1 Holland 5 in Group B and Group D's England 1 Italy 2 were both top games with plenty of world class talent on show.

    And this game is no different. One of the best teams in the tournament and many people's favourites in Germany up against the best player on the planet Cristinao Ronaldo and his Portugal.

    Going to be good! Excited much?



    Germany striker Miroslav Klose became the top scorer in Germany’s history when he scored his 69 goal against Armenia.
    He now has a golden opportunity to make history and become the all-time top scorer in World Cup history as he is just two goals away from surpassing Brazilian star Ronaldo.



    6/16/2014 11:53:27 AM
  • Don't be mean Reza, Portugal have some other decent players too!


    6/16/2014 11:55:47 AM
  • The Twittersphere is alive with Germany v Portugal talk!



    6/16/2014 11:57:39 AM

  • Arena Fonte Nova, Salvador, tonight's stage 


    Simon Hart, our man in Salvador for this one, has had his say ahead of the big kick-off. 

    Despite struggling with his knee problems, Ronaldo says he is 100% fit to face das Germans later today and he will be captain too. 

    Portugal have other talents in their ranks. Veloso, Moutinho and Coentroa will all provide good back up support for CR7 and for Germany, Miroslav Klose has the chance to become the record goal-scorer at the World Cup finals - more of that later. 

    Ronaldo will lead Portugal out at their opening Group G game against Germany and, reading between the lines, will be playing through the pain barrier to do so. The 29-year-old said: “I want to be at 110 per cent but am at 100 per cent and that is enough to help the national team.

    6/16/2014 12:03:56 PM
  • Now, back to yesterday and the other games that took place...
    6/16/2014 12:04:35 PM
  • Switzerland and Ecuador were up first yesterday, not the glamour game of the opening round but quite a match we were treated too!

    Substitute Haris Seferovic smashed home the winner for the Swiss in the very last second to break Ecuadoran hearts! They deserved a point but the number six ranked side in the world, Switzerland, found a way to win and get that vital three points.

    My personal highlight of the game was the Switzerland fans with their swiss-cheese hats on, loved that!

    With France looking very decent indeed, second place looks to be all that is up for grabs in Group E and on this showing, Switzerland will need to work hard to secure it. 

    Good game, good goals, late drama, everything you would want. Relive the action with Tim RIch's report...

    Both the goals that gave Ottmar Hitzfeld’s side a dramatic victory in Brasilia were scored by players with their roots in the former Yugoslavia. Haris Seferovic, who finished off a brilliantly-executed counter-attack in the last moments of stoppage time, is the child of immigrants from what is now Bosnia while Admir Mehmedi came to Switzerland as a two-year-old from Macedonia.

    6/16/2014 12:13:29 PM



  • Some pics from the action yesterday!

    6/16/2014 12:17:52 PM


  • And then there was France v Honduras…

    In this bitter, nasty and niggerly match-up, the French came out well on top and the Hondurans were left with ten man, no ideas and looking poor.

    There was one red-card but there could have three or four in truth and Paul Pogba nearly wrote his name into French footballing folk-law with his own David Beckham-esk kick out.

    Wilson Palacios did see red to cap an awful half hour for the Stoke man and goal line technology finally came into play! All that was sandwiched around a quite brilliant performance from Karim Benzema who finally showed what he is all about on the international stage.


    The conspiracy theorists in the French camp will tell you the Hondurans tried to use every available technology to win their Group E opener. They will say that the group who deployed a drone plane to fly over last Tuesday’s training sessions – France manager Didier Descamps has officially complained to Fifa about it – was also responsible for disabling PA system, which prevented the national anthems being played before the match. The prospect of starting the tournament without La Marseillaise to swell French spirits was certainly not part of the French script.

    6/16/2014 12:27:14 PM


  • As I said before, yes goal line technology finally came into full force in the French game. 

    After countless replays of balls flying into the net followed by pointless freeze-frames from the goal line system, France's second against Honduras actually needed the aid of the tech!

    Yohan Cabaye, superb on the night, pinged a majestic ball over the Karim Benzema in the 48th minute. 

    The Real Madrid man greeted the pass on the volley and smash his effort at goal. After it came back off the post, Honduran goalkeeper Noel Valladares spilled the ball over the line, just, by mere millimetres!

    And, goal line technology came to the rescue with the rest being history...

    The decision was confirmed by TV replays but it did not succeed in its aim of preventing debate following contentious decisions as a touchline row broke out between France manager Didier Deschamps and his Honduran counterpart Luis Fernando Suarez.

    6/16/2014 12:35:57 PM
  • Everyone around the world just loves the World Cup but do they love Twitter more??



    6/16/2014 12:39:52 PM


  • Goal line technology may have confirmed France's second goal last night by their boss Didier Deschamps has come out in criticism of the system.

    There was a solid five minute spell of confusion from the officials after Benzema's superb effort that Valladares parried over the line leading to many questioning about whether  the system really works and if the powers that be know what they are doing. 

    “It’s a good solution and the goal counts,” said Deschamps. “The referee gets the signal. We were just worried they showed an image that does not correspond to the goal, when it hit the post. Only when the keeper pushes it into the goal does it counts. They were nervous and so were we. If the image is to be shown it must be the one that backs up the ref’s decision.

    6/16/2014 12:46:45 PM
  • It was tight but the system works! Can't help but think, poor old Frank Lampard!


    6/16/2014 12:49:06 PM
  • Let's check in with Joe from Opta for the first time today and all his hard working stat-hungry mates. Great stuff fellas!  



    6/16/2014 12:51:08 PM


  • That German, Miroslav Klose, what a player and servant he has been for his country. 

    He now has the chance to become the greatest ever World Cup goal-scorer at this tournament if he can just net twice more. 

    At the moment, Brazil legend Ronaldo leads the way with 15 World Cup goals. Klose, joint with fellow German Gerd Muller, has 14 and a great chance to take the outright lead, starting tonight against Portugal. 

    Will the Lazio striker do it? Will her??

    Want to know where England sit on that table of all time tournament goal-scorers? Well, Gary Lineker is in joint 8th with his ten World Cup goals, not bad at all! 


    6/16/2014 12:59:25 PM
  • It's two O'Clock, let's check in with the headlines of the day...

    Dong, Cristiano Ronaldo is confident his Portugal will enjoy a successful World Cup and he has declared himself fit to face Germany tonight.

    Dong, Wayne Rooney says he doesn't take his England starting place for granted and works hard to keep it everyday. 

    Dong, Lionel Messi delivers an ominous warning by saying his Argentina have a lot more to show in this World Cup.

    6/16/2014 1:06:24 PM
  • Interesting action in our two polls from today! Keep your votes coming in and we'll sum them both up later in the day.
    6/16/2014 1:07:24 PM


  • We've talked a lot about Germany v Portugal so far today and rightly so in my book but there are two other live games coming up. 

    Iran v Nigeria is the second game on tonight, live with us from 8pm. The Arena da Baixade will be the stage for this Group F clash with both sides needing to get off to a winning start if they are to have any chance of getting to the next round.

    The Africans have plenty of Premier League names in their ranks, Shola Ameobi, Victor Moses and John Obi Mikel to name a few. 

    Iran also have their star man, Fulham's Ashkan Dejagah and Charlton Atheltic fans will be excited to see their man Reza Ghoochannejhad in action on the biggest stage of all!

    This one should be an open affair as both teams surely must have to go for the win. 

    Check out our preview here...

    Nigeria are hoping to extend their undefeated streak in international matches against Iran, in a fixture with there is no room for error as World Cup favourites Argentina and wildcards Bosnia-Herzegovina are also featuring on the same group.


    6/16/2014 1:18:54 PM
  • Only Reza indeed! I can only assume that Faren is saying good luck...


    6/16/2014 1:20:39 PM


  • And the last game up tonight is another that neither team dare lose. Ghana v USA, two teams that are coming into this tournament un-fancied and unloved. 

    Both sides have lost several of their stars in recent years and have their weakest squads for many a year. 

    With Germany and Portugal up next for both of them in Group G, this should be an open game with plenty of goals as both teams go for broke or face an early flight home. 

    Much of Ghana's hope still rely on Asamoah Gyan and Michael Essien but neither man is coming off a good season domestically. 

    The USA too have the same old squad we all know and don't really love, especially now that Landon Donovan has been cut. 

    We should have goals, we'll definitely have drama and go on, get clued up with our preview, you've earned it!



    6/16/2014 1:33:51 PM
  • Plenty of face-paint yesterday, good work everyone!





    6/16/2014 1:41:00 PM


  • My pick for the heroes of this World Cup so far has nothing to do with what has happened on the pitch.

    Not Messi, nor Sturridge or RVP. No, it's the Japanese fans!

    After their heartbreaking defeat to Ivory Coast, in which they were one goal to the good before losing 2-1, the Japan following proceeded to clean up the stadium!!

    One of the most endearing things I have ever seen at a football match and real credit to them!

    Despite seeing the Blue Samurais lose 2-1 against Didier Drogba's team at the Arena Pernambuco in Recife, Japanese spectators armed with bin liners patrolled their side of the stadium and gathered up discarded litter, Yahoo Sport reported.

    While gathering waste after a sporting event is customary in Japan, the spectators’ actions came as a shock to football fans from other countries.


    6/16/2014 1:49:17 PM


  • Back to the top story of the day and the news that Cristiano Ronaldo will be fit to start for Portugal against Germany tonight.

    The main man has been struggling with a knee problem for several days and was a big worry for the Portuguese but it looks like he will be giving the green light to captain his side.

    The game kicks-off at 5pm our time and is live from Salvador's Arena Fonte Nova. 

    Going to be a good one, that's for sure, you ready?

    "But I feel I am in the best moment of my career and I want to continue that moment and enjoy it. I want to be champion but let's take it a step at a time.

    "This is a different tournament to 2006 and 2010. There are many new players but only at the end will we know.

    "But we have many good players and I believe we will have a good World Cup."


    6/16/2014 1:56:17 PM
  • How about some stats and fact of you all aout this big game??

    - The sides have played a total of nine times against each other – before and after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Germany won the lion share with five wins whereas Portugal only won one game in Euro 2000.

    - Both teams were undefeated in their last three warm-up matches but Portugal finished second in their qualifying group behind Russia and had to overcome Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s Sweden in the play-offs.

    - Cristiano Ronaldo is the all-time top scorer of Portugal with 49 goals in 111 international appearances.

    - Germany striker Miroslav Klose became the top scorer in Germany’s history when he scored his 69 goal against Armenia. He now has a golden opportunity to make history and become the all-time top scorer in World Cup history as he is just two goals away from surpassing Brazilian star Ronaldo.


    Read the full preview from Kostas Lianos here…




    6/16/2014 2:03:23 PM


  • Under two hours to kick-off guys!
    6/16/2014 2:04:48 PM
  • That camel has got four right so far, it looks like Portugal are going to win tonight! We do love a psychic animal!


    6/16/2014 2:09:00 PM
  • Get in touch guys! Any thoughts, questions or viewpoints? Just hit the comment button above and let us know!
    6/16/2014 2:11:29 PM
  • Fans from Germany and Portugal gearing up for tonight's action, looking great guys!



    6/16/2014 2:13:33 PM


  • That's all for later though and back to the England camp we go. 

    Wayne Rooney has come out and said that he doesn't take his England place for granted and that he works hard to keep his starting role everyday. 

    Wazza was played from wide left by Roy Hodgson in Saturday's defeat to Italy and while he was on the whole pretty quiet, Rooney did produce a fine cross for Daniel Sturridge's goal. 

    He just doesn't look quite happy enough though, does he?! Maybe if England play in red on Thursday night and he pretends he's playing for Man U he'll do a bit better. 

    We asked you yesterday whether you thought Rooney should be dropped for England's next game against Uruguay and you voted a big, fat YES! 

    We'll see if Roy thinks the same in a few days time...

    Asked whether playing wide got the best from him, Rooney said: “I don’t know. I enjoyed the game. Obviously, we lost the game but I was involved in the game, could have scored, created the goal and felt I had an influence, although we lost the game.

    6/16/2014 2:20:59 PM


  • A lot of the build up to France's opening World Cup game was surrounded by one word, 'drones'. 

    If it was Honduras who sent that mysterious UFO over the French camp it didn't do much good as Les Bleus swept to a 3-0 win to open their Group E account in style. 

    French goalkeeper and Tottenham man Hugo Lloris came out after the game last night to comment on the drone-gate for the first time and have a read about the bizarre story from the mouth of the number one... 

    The France captain Hugo Lloris has provided the first description of the unmanned drone which flew over the squad’s training session last week, revealing it looked like “a little helicopter” and that there was no way of preventing it spying on the players.

    6/16/2014 2:27:20 PM
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