Iceland hold Portugal at 1-1

Saint-√Čtienne (France), June 15 (IANS) Portugal and Iceland were the final two sides to get their Euro 2016 campaigns underway and on Tuesday they played a 1-1 draw at the Stade Geoffroy-Guichard stadium here.

Portugal have been in impressive form under Fernando Santos during the qualifying campaign while Iceland are not only featuring in their first ever major international tournament but it is alos the smallest nation to ever do so.

Nani’s goal had put the favourites ahead and they appeared to be on the way to a straightforward victory, but their defensive failings came back to haunt them after the break when Birkir Bjarnason equalised.

Vieirinha’s throughball found Andre Gomes in the right channel and he squared for Nani to add the simple side-foot finish from six yards taking Portugal 1-0 up.

Ronaldo dragged a long-distance volley wide of the right-hand post as the second half continued in a similar manner, but Iceland hit back in the 51st minute.

Gudmundsson made progress down the right before checking back and launching a deep cross to the back post where Bjarnason had escaped Vieirinha’s attentions to volley in unmarked.

In the dying minutes of the match, both team pressurised up front but could not put the ball beyond each other’s goalline.

–IANS

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