It’s safe to say that it’s been an eventful week for the Portuguese national team. A dramatic last-minute win against Ireland last week saw their talisman, Cristiano Ronaldo, become the all-time leading goalscorer in men’s international football.
The 36-year-old celebrated his second goal by taking his shirt off, which resulted in a yellow card. Subsequently, he was banned from their next World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan and released early from the camp.
In his absence, it was another Manchester United star who stepped up as he was one of the best players on the pitch when Portugal comfortably overcame Azerbaijan in Baku.
The 27-year-old was at the heart of everything for Fernando Santos’ side, highlighted below in their first-half opener. Fernandes’ pinpoint cross was met by Manchester City’s Bernardo Silva, who could hardly miss after that delicious delivery.
Scored for Portugal, made in Manchester. 🤝
Bruno Fernandes finds Bernardo Silva who scores a stunning opener for Portugal against Azerbaijan! 🇵🇹 pic.twitter.com/ZYpQaYTprF
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) September 7, 2021
Footage courtesy of Sky Sports
Following the victory, which puts them top in their World Cup qualifying group, Fernandes will now travel back to Manchester after helping his nation win all three games in the first international break of the season.
The former Sporting midfielder is expected to start this weekend’s game against Newcastle as he eyes a return to the scoresheet, having failed to net since his hattrick against Leeds United on the opening day of the season.