LVIV: Portugal’s Silvestre Varela scored a dramatic 87th-winner to give his side a 3-2 win over Denmark in a pulsating European Championship Group B match here today.
Portugal looked to have thrown a two-goal lead away when Danish striker Nicklas Bendtner scored the second of two close-range headers to equalise in the 80th minute. But Varela gave the Portuguese the win they badly needed when he smashed home from close range.
Portugal had taken a 2-0 lead in the first half after good work by Nani. Defender Pepe lost his marker from a corner and powered a header past goalkeeper Stephan Andersen in the 24th minute. They doubled their lead in the 36th minute when striker Helder Postiga got in front of defender Simon Kjaer far too easily to turn home a Nani pass from close range.
It was a bad moment for Kjaer, who had boasted Denmark would be able to contain winger Cristiano Ronaldo, and he had to make a desperate clearance in the 44th minute to stop Nani setting up another goal.
Bendtner scored his first in the 41st minute, nodding home after Michael Krohn-Dehli sent a looping header over goalkeeper Rui Patricio. The goals were his fourth and fifth in four competitive games against Portugal. The result means Denmark and Portugal both have three points with one game left.
Ronaldo had another poor game and missed two good chances, shooting straight at Andersen in the 50th minute and screwing a shot wide in the 78th when it looked easier to score. Denmark have a good recent record against Portugal but looked largely toothless.