Alexis Mac Allister has impressed with Argentina during the World Cup, with his side qualifying for the semi-finals with Friday's penalty shoot-out win over the Netherlands.

The 23-year-old midfielder is contracted with Brighton and Hove Albion until mid-2025.

The Argentine penned a new deal with the Seagulls in October, securing him for the next two-and-a-half seasons, with the option of an additional one year.

 

TOP STORY – EUROPEAN GIANTS CIRCLE FOR MAC ALLISTER

Tottenham, Juventus, Inter and Atletico Madrid are all interested in Alexis Mac Allister, reports Fichajes.

Inter are particularly interested, viewing Mac Allister as a long-term replacement for Marcelo Brozovic, while Spurs boss Antonio Conte wants to add creativity to his midfield.

Juventus have been scouting numerous players at the World Cup, while Atletico are eager to add quality to their midfield, with Rodrigo de Paul drawing interest too.

 

ROUND-UP

– Calciomercato claims that Newcastle United are in contention to sign Inter defender Milan Skriniar, amid interest from Paris Saint-Germain too. Skriniar is yet to sign a new deal with Inter, with his contract expiring at the end of this season.

– South Korea centre-back Kim Min-Jae has interest from Manchester United , according to the Sunday Mirror. United have competition from Real Madrid for the Napoli defender who has a £38m release clause.

Barcelona are eager to complete a deal for Chelsea's French midfielder N'Golo Kante, reports Sport. Kante is out of contract at season's end.

Hakim Ziyech's wage demands may scupper Milan's pursuit of the Chelsea midfielder, according to Gazzetta dello Sport.

– Inter defender Stefan de Vrij is being chased by Tottenham, who may swoop in January, reports Football Insider.

– Real Madrid midfielder Eden Hazard is considering a move to the MLS, according to Mundo Deportivo.

Gareth Southgate will take his time to "make the correct decision" regarding his future as England manager but was encouraged by the way his young team went toe to toe with France on Saturday.

England were the better team for long periods at Al Bayt but ultimately fell short with Olivier Giroud's 78th-minute header proving to be decisive as Les Bleus clinched a 2-1 win to set up a semi-final with Morocco on Wednesday.

Southgate's contract runs until the end of the European Championship in 2024, but he will use the next few weeks to reflect on whether he wants to carry on.

He said: "Whenever I have finished these tournaments I have needed time to make the correct decision because you go through so many feelings.

"I want to make the right decision, whatever that is for the team, for England and for the Football Association. It's right to take some time to do that because I know how my feelings have fluctuated in the immediate aftermath of previous tournaments.

"It's the decision to go again, it's a lot of energy and you have to make sure you're ready for that. There are Euro qualifiers in March and there's too much in my head to think about that tonight.

"I wanted to focus on this tournament and I think we've given a really good account of ourselves. But in the end only one team wins and we've fallen just short."

Southgate led England to the semi-finals of the World Cup in Russia four years ago and the final of Euro 2020, yet his critics have continued to accuse him of playing in a negative manner.

That certainly wasn't the case in Qatar, with no team scoring more than England's nine goals in the group phase before a 3-0 round of 16 win over Senegal.

And against France, England played front-foot football that troubled the defending champions throughout.

Southgate added: "I think it's the best we've played against a major nation in the period I have been in charge but the scoreline is all that matters.

"They know how close they've come. They know they've pushed a top nation all the way. We had more possession, more attempts on goal…I am very proud of how they've been, not just tonight but throughout the tournament.

"We've shown a different face in terms of how we've played. We wanted to go toe to toe with the top nations, that's how we approached this tournament and we've done that. There's so much to be excited about given the age of some of the players.

"We've shown the rest of the world that English football is healthy and we have some very good players, not just for now but for the future as well."

England captain Harry Kane had the chance to take the game to extra time following Giroud's goal but blazed an 84th-minute penalty over the crossbar.

He had earlier netted from the spot to cancel out Aurelien Tchouameni's first-half opener and Southgate was quick to defend the Tottenham striker.

"He's very low but he's got nothing to reproach himself for," he said.

"We're in the position we are as a team due to his goals and his leadership over a long period of time. The result was due to 100 minutes of football and things that happened at both ends of the pitch.

"Even if the penalty goes in we've still got a lot to do to win the game. We win and lose together.

"It was difficult when you get a second penalty against a goalkeeper you know very well [Kane's Tottenham team-mate Hugo Lloris]. Even the best are going to miss at times, that's football.

"But there's no-one I'd rather have in that situation and if we got a penalty tomorrow I'd feel the same way.

"It's cruel for him because he will feel disappointed in himself, but he shouldn't."

Harry Kane took responsibility for England's World Cup exit after blazing a late penalty over the bar in the Three Lions' 2-1 defeat to France, saying he will "have to live with" the error.

England more than matched France during Saturday's tense quarter-final at Al Bayt Stadium, with Kane cancelling out Aurelien Tchouameni's opener from the spot after the France midfielder fouled Bukayo Saka in the area.

However, Olivier Giroud restored the holders' lead with 12 minutes remaining, and Kane was unable to score again when Theo Hernandez conceded a second penalty six minutes from time, firing over the crossbar.

The miss saw Kane squander the chance to surpass Wayne Rooney as England's all-time top goalscorer with his 54th international strike, while the Three Lions fell to their seventh World Cup quarter-final elimination – a tournament record.

Speaking to BBC Sport after the defeat, England's captain fronted up to his mistake and praised his team-mates for going toe-to-toe with the world champions.

"It's tough to take for me personally and for the team," he said. "I couldn't be prouder of the boys. We had better spells, better chances, but football comes down to small details. 

"As the captain and the one who missed the penalty, I take responsibility for that. I can't fault my preparation or the details before the game. 

"I felt confident taking it, I just didn't execute it the way I wanted to. It will be something I have to live with and take on the chin.

"The team is in a really good place and there will be highs in the future. Standing here now, we are gutted it has come to an end as we had full belief we could go all the way. We can be proud of what we've done."

Kane is the first player to both score and miss a penalty in a World Cup match (excluding shoot-outs) since Michal Bilek did so for Czechoslovakia against the United States in 1990.

He has scored more World Cup penalties than any other player (four).

The miss leaves Kane level with Rooney on 53 England goals, and the Manchester United great expressed his support for the Three Lions skipper after the loss.

"Absolutely gutted for the lads but proud of the way they've played this tournament and they should be proud," Rooney said on Twitter.

"Congratulations to Harry Kane on equalling the record, he'll be on his own soon and I couldn't think of anyone better to take over. Keep your head up Harry."

Aurelien Tchouameni warned "a group is being born" after France edged out England 2-1 to reach the World Cup semi-finals.

Les Bleus are the first reigning champions to reach the last four since Brazil in 1998, as Olivier Giroud settled a tight affair with 12 minutes remaining after a Harry Kane penalty cancelled out Tchouameni's earlier 25-yard effort at Al Bayt Stadium.

Didier Deschamps' side suffered a late scare when England were awarded a second spot-kick six minutes from time, only for Kane to blaze high over Hugo Lloris' goal.

Tchouameni told beIN SPORTS: "We are getting stronger. A group is being born, we feel good, we must continue.

"We suffered – it's the World Cup, we played a very good English team. We managed to win, we are happy."

Meanwhile, Adrien Rabiot hailed the togetherness in the France group, with Morocco up next in the last four on Wednesday.

"[I feel] pride, proud of this team, this group," the midfielder said. "There is joy. We have suffered, we have shown that we can be united and in solidarity.

"We were warned and prepared, we knew they would be committed. We responded with our weapons. It's an incredible moment. It is a moment of communion, as from the beginning, that carries us.

"More and more people are behind us and believe in it. We feel that there is something to be done. Even when we are in trouble, nothing can happen to us."

Olivier Giroud compared France's tense 2022 World Cup quarter-final win over England to their semi-final victory against Belgium four years ago.

France scraped past the Three Lions 2-1 at Al Bayt Stadium on Saturday, with Giroud's deflected header ultimately the difference.

Aurelien Tchouameni had fired the world champions ahead, but England responded strongly and levelled through a Harry Kane penalty.

Gareth Southgate's side might have equalised a second time following Giroud's goal, only for Kane to fire a second spot-kick over the crossbar.

Victory sends France through to a semi-final against surprise package Morocco, with Didier Deschamps' side looking like favourites to retain their crown.

But this tie showed how hard it is to win the World Cup, with Giroud reminded of a 1-0 defeat of Belgium in Russia.

"The match tonight reminded of the match against Belgium in 2018," Giroud told a news conference. "We fought tooth and nail.

"They came back into the match, started to believe, but we showed we could be dangerous on the counter-attack.

"We were a bit lucky because Kane misses the penalty, but we gave our all and fought tooth and nail. It reminds me of the mentality of 2018. This group deserves to get there."

Giroud had equalled and then passed Thierry Henry's France goals record earlier in the finals.

"All goals are important," he added. "The fact is I went ahead of Thierry Henry with the 52nd, but this 53rd is perhaps even better.

"A minute before, I had a chance and I could have scored. I thought I might get another chance, and it was unbelievable to score."

Didier Deschamps felt the "small details and a bit of luck" went France's way as they edged past England 2-1 to secure a place in the World Cup semi-finals.

Olivier Giroud grabbed what turned out to be the winner with 12 minutes to go with England captain Harry Kane missing a second penalty of the night shortly after. His first was successful, cancelling out Aurelien Tchouameni's opener.

Deschamps, whose side now face surprise package Morocco in Wednesday's second last-four clash, was relieved to have squeezed through.

He said: "England have a very good team and what they showed in terms of technical ability and intensity, even though we put up a good fight, was impressive.

"Credit to my team as well, we also showed some very good things. We have great quality and we also have impressive mental strength. We have experience but so do England, they have some young players but they are players that play for the top clubs in Europe.

"We could see they were a good team at the outset of the tournament and it comes down to small details and luckily tonight it went our way. You need a bit of luck sometimes."

Vive la France

Into the #FIFAWorldCup semi-finals!#Qatar2022

— FIFA World Cup (@FIFAWorldCup) December 10, 2022
England were the better team for long periods at Al Bayt Stadium and Deschamps preferred to focus on the strengths of France's opponents than criticise his own team for some of their failings.

"They have quality in all areas of the pitch," he added. "There were certain things we could have done better but maybe it's because they didn't let us do them well.

"We still scored two goals and created several opportunities. We deserved it but the other team were very strong."

Deschamps' contract is due to expire at the end of the tournament but the president of the French Football Federation, Noel Le Great, has expressed hope that he will continue.

Deschamps refused to go into any great detail regarding his future but did not commit to remaining at the helm of Les Bleus.

"I will be the coach for the semi-final and then we will see," he said. "We will tackle that problem when it arises. It's great that the president is happy, I am sure there are a lot of people that are happy tonight.

"Just four years after our last victory at the World Cup we are in the last four. Let's focus on Wednesday, I am not thinking about anything else at the minute."

Harry Kane "will be stronger" for having missed the penalty that saw England eliminated from the World Cup by France on Saturday.

That is the opinion of Jordan Henderson, who was substituted shortly before the Three Lions were awarded a second spot-kick in their 2-1 defeat.

Kane had scored the first to cancel out Aurelien Tchouameni's first-half goal, but his second attempt cleared the crossbar, meaning an Olivier Giroud header proved to be the winner.

No player in World Cup history has scored more spot-kicks than Kane's four, with this the first he has missed.

"We know how many penalties Harry has scored for us, how many goals he has contributed to even get us here," midfielder Henderson told ITV.

"He will be stronger for this in the future. He is a world-class striker and our captain. He will bounce back."

Henderson concluded "it wasn't our night", although he felt it could have been as England went toe-to-toe with the world champions.

"We felt good, the performances were really good, the focus and hunger has been really good," he added.

"But you have to give credit to France, who are a good team. I still feel it was there for us to win tonight."

Declan Rice gave his backing to England manager Gareth Southgate as his players took responsibility for Saturday's agonising World Cup quarter-final defeat to France.

England lost 2-1 to the world champions despite long periods in which they controlled the game at Al Bayt Stadium.

Harry Kane's penalty cancelled out Aurelien Tchouameni's opener, but a second spot-kick from the Three Lions captain sailed over the crossbar after Olivier Giroud had restored France's lead.

Rice felt England "handled the occasion well" and were undone by "two goals that you don't really see us concede".

For that reason, the midfielder felt it was unfair to place any blame at Southgate's door following another missed opportunity at a major tournament.

"I hope he stays. There's a lot of talk around that," Rice said. "I think he's been brilliant for us, and there's been a lot of criticism that's not deserved.

"He's taken us so, so far, further than what people would expect.

"Tonight, he got everything spot on. It's not on him. The tactics were spot on. We played the right way, we were aggressive, we stopped [Kylian] Mbappe – he was quiet – and it was two goals against the run of play.

"That isn't down to the manager, it's down to the players on the pitch. I really hope he stays."

Rice believed England's performance was evidence of their progress under Southgate, who is set to take some time to consider his future.

"We really believed that this year could be our year," he said. "We got to the Euros final, and we've really progressed as a team over the past few years.

"We weren't over-confident, but we were confident we could go out there tonight and beat France. That's the mentality switch England have not had over the years.

"I think we dominated the game. Other than their two goals, I don't really remember them creating much. We played some great football, and it's a game of small margins.

"We win together and we lose together; it's just obviously really hard to process it."

Frenkie de Jong has described the officiating of the Netherlands' World Cup quarter-final against Argentina as "scandalous", claiming referee Antonio Mateu Lahoz was influenced by Lionel Messi.

The Netherlands staged a remarkable comeback to force extra time after going 2-0 down in Friday's clash courtesy of Wout Weghorst double, but the Oranje then suffered penalty heartache as they lost the shoot-out 4-3.

Lahoz was widely criticised for his display after showing 15 yellow cards during the match.

Argentina captain Messi said Lahoz was not "up to the task" of overseeing such a fixture at the end of a heated affair, and while De Jong agrees, he felt the presence of his former Barcelona team-mate contributed. 

"When regular playing time was over, the Argentina players all went to him and from then on he only whistled for Argentina," De Jong said of Lahoz. 

"Jurrien Timber's shoe was kicked off, but then he whistled for a foul against us. Luuk [de Jong] just wins a normal header and he blows his whistle, they kick the ball into our dugout, he doesn't care.

"Messi takes the ball with his hand, he just lets it go. He was really scandalous. 

"He is a nice guy, a good referee. But here he was beyond reason. I think he lost his way in overtime. 

"It could well be that the greatness of Lionel Messi had an influence on that. It's not the referee's fault, but it did affect the game."

Only Spain, with four, have lost more World Cup penalty shoot-outs than the Netherlands, one win, three defeats, while Argentina have prevailed on spot-kicks at the tournament more often than any other team with five and one defeat.

The manner of the Netherlands' defeat left De Jong stunned, with the midfielder revealing he was convinced they would lift the trophy.

"I was convinced that we would win when we equalised," De Jong said. "In any case, I was convinced that we would become world champions.''

Harry Kane missed a late penalty as France squeezed through to the World Cup semi-finals with a 2-1 win over England.

Kane cancelled out Aurelien Tchouameni's opener with a 54th-minute penalty but could not repeat the feat with seven minutes to go, blazing high over the bar.

In between the spot-kicks, Oliver Giroud's header had given France an advantage that proved decisive as they advanced to a last-four clash with Morocco on Wednesday.

 

Cristiano Ronaldo's partner Georgina Rodriguez has criticised Portugal coach Fernando Santos' tactics as the nation suffered a shock World Cup elimination against Morocco.

The 37-year-old forward was benched for the second successive match, as his side fell to a 1-0 quarter-final defeat thanks to a Youssef En-Nesyri header.

Though Ronaldo was introduced shortly after the start of the second half, he was unable to make an impact.

He marched down the tunnel in tears after Portugal crashed out and Rodriguez later launched a stinging attack on head coach Santos.

"Today, your friend and coach decided wrong," she wrote on Instagram. "That friend for whom you have so many words of admiration, and so much respect.

"The same friend who, putting you on the field, saw how everything changed, but it was too late. 

"You can't underestimate the best player in the world and the most powerful weapon you have, just as you can't stand up for someone who doesn't deserve it."

Ronaldo has almost certainly played his last World Cup game and it remains to be seen where he will continue his club career after he was released by Manchester United.

Though Ronaldo has hinted he may yet play on through to the 2026 World Cup, the question of his future with the national side is also up in the air.

Walid Regragui compared Morocco to Rocky Balboa after his side overcame Portugal to make World Cup history.

Morocco became the first African team to reach the World Cup semi-finals with a 1-0 victory at Al Thumama Stadium on Saturday.

Youssef En-Nesyri's header put them ahead in the 42nd minute and the Atlas Lions holding firm amid late pressure.

Morocco have conceded only once – an own-goal – in their five matches in Qatar, despite having played Belgium, Spain, Portugal and fellow semi-finalists Croatia.

Regragui believes his team sent a "message to the world", which is now fully behind Morocco's story – one the coach likened to Hollywood's underdog boxer.

"We are becoming the team everyone loves at this World Cup because we are showing if you work hard enough, show that passion and belief, you can achieve," he said.

"It's no miracle. Many will say it's a miracle, especially in Europe, but we've played Croatia, Belgium, Spain, Portugal without letting in a goal.

"That's not a miracle, it's the result of hard work. We've made our people happy and proud, the continent happy and proud, so many people around the world happy.

"When you watch Rocky, you support him because of his heart and commitment. We are the Rocky of this World Cup.

"When you are a small team, you need this belief. I told the players you don't go to a World Cup to play for three games. Anyone who just came to play three games cannot come with me.

"Football for this is the best sport in the world – you can believe, you can do it. It's a message to the world and I think the world is now with Morocco."

Morocco have not had it easy. As well as facing some of the world's best sides, they have had to contend with injuries to key players – Noussair Mazraoui and Nayef Aguerd were absent on Saturday, while captain Romain Saiss went off injured early in the second half.

But Regragui trusts his squad, as he reiterated Morocco's dream is to go all the way in Qatar.

"It's great to come to the World Cup to play the group stage matches – the fans would be happy, but before the first round everyone thought we would get knocked out," he said.

"But we have elite players. We have a team that can win games at the World Cup. We needed to be confident, go out and have no regrets. The players believed me.

"What's important for future generations is we've shown it is possible for an African team to get to the semi-finals, and why not even a final? Why not?

"We should dream, dream of winning a World Cup. If you don't dream you can't get anywhere, it costs nothing to have dreams.

"Anyone playing us will be afraid of us, they'll have to be at the top of their game. That's the message I'll send to them."

Morocco will go up against the winner of France versus England in the semi-finals.

Bruno Fernandes hit out at the decision to appoint an Argentinian referee to Portugal's World Cup quarter-final against Morocco following their defeat, claiming: "They have clearly tilted the field against us".

Portugal were eliminated at the quarter-final stage of the tournament for the first time as Youssef En-Nesyri headed home the only goal of the game in the first half.

However, the performance of referee Facundo Tello was criticised by Portugal's players after the game, in which Fernandes was denied a penalty when he went down under a challenge from Achraf Hakimi.

Defender Pepe described Tello's appointment as "unacceptable" after Portugal's loss, and Fernandes concurred.

"I don't know if they are going to give the cup to Argentina. I'm going to say what I think and f*** them," Fernandes told reporters at the Al Thumama Stadium.

"It's very strange that a referee from a team that's still in the tournament referees us. They have clearly tilted the field against us.

"These referees do not officiate in the Champions League. They are not used to this type of game and this pace. 

"In the first half there is a clear penalty on me, without any doubt. Never in my life have I let myself fall when I was alone with the goalkeeper and could shoot at the goal."

Meanwhile, Portugal's World Cup campaign has been overshadowed by speculation concerning the future of Cristiano Ronaldo, who saw his Manchester United contract terminated last month after criticising the club in an interview with Piers Morgan.

Fernandes refuted the suggestion the talk surrounding Ronaldo had negatively impacted Portugal, saying: "Perhaps because of who he is, people click more often on his news.

"It wasn't for that reason that the team didn't go further. We simply couldn't beat Morocco."

Reflecting on Portugal's campaign in Qatar, Fernandes insisted there had been no issue with their application, preferring to credit Morocco's defensive organisation.

"There are some other teams that could be in the semi-finals," he said. "We had quality and commitment to go further. This was not lacking, but unfortunately football has these moments. 

"It is very difficult and sad to accept this. I can't say anything about my team-mates. They've all been fantastic since the beginning of the tournament.

"It is very difficult to express in words. It is a difficult and sad moment for us. We had the ambition and quality for more. There is always something else that we can leave on the field. 

"But I repeat, the delivery and commitment was total. The big difference was that we couldn't score goals, and they knew how to defend very well."

Morocco goalkeeper Yassine Bounou hopes the Atlas Lions' "miracle" run to the World Cup semi-finals convinces future generations of Moroccan talent to no longer have an inferiority complex.

After eliminating Spain on penalties in the last 16, Morocco arguably produced an even bigger shock as Walid Regragui's men beat Portugal 1-0 at Al Thumama Stadium on Saturday.

Youssef En-Nesyri's first-half header proved decisive, ensuring Morocco became the first African team to reach the semi-finals of a World Cup.

While En-Nesyri's goal was ultimately crucial, Morocco would not have held on were it not for the heroics of Bounou in net; his saves from Joao Felix and Cristiano Ronaldo in the latter stages helped them cling on to their famous result, also earning him the Player of the Match award.

Unsurprisingly, the Sevilla goalkeeper was in a state of jubilant shock, but he and the team want their run to inspire greater belief for the next generation.

Bounou, who earned his 50th cap on Saturday, told reporters: "We're in the same state as you are. Pinch me, I think I'm dreaming!

"But as our coach said, we're here to change the mentality. This feeling of inferiority we've had, we need to get rid of it.

"A Moroccan player can face anyone in the world.

"The most important thing is we’ve changed this mentality and the generation coming after us will now know a Moroccan team can create miracles.

"It's really, really hard to find the words to describe this moment. All our team, the supporters on our backs, this is all I have.

"All the players put in a stellar performance. We had injuries, all the players on the pitch were at the highest level. It's hard to describe such a joy."

Bounou was also keen not to take too much of the glory for himself after earning the gong for the match's best player, having become the first African goalkeeper to keep three clean sheets at a single World Cup.

And it was not the award itself that filled him with pride, rather the expectation that Moroccans will see him as a beacon of hope en route to the top of the game.

"I got this award because I have great players with me. All of them, all of them on the pitch are fantastic," he continued.

"When someone hears about a Moroccan player, they might know now that they can actually play at the highest level. This is what makes me proud."

When having his photo shoot with the Player of the Match trophy, Bounou invited match-winner En-Nesyri in with him, even passing the prize to his colleague.

The two are club-mates at Sevilla, where En-Nesyri has struggled for form over the past 18 months – in fact, his trio of goals in Qatar is three more than he has managed in LaLiga this season.

Despite En-Nesyri's problems at club level, Regragui insists he never lost faith in the striker.

"I've always believed in Youssef. Even Moroccan journalists criticised me when I defended him, but he's here," Regragui said.

"I accepted the criticism and I said to him he is a top player. He's the top scorer in history for Morocco at the World Cup.

"I told him, the answer is on the pitch. This is going to be a lesson in the future. Coaches have reasons for choices and I've always believed in him, because of his energy on the pitch, that's why he plays for Sevilla.

"He's like [Olivier] Giroud for France, he works so hard for the team. Sometimes [these types of strikers] are criticised. He's from Morocco, he trained in Morocco and he's an important player.

"I'm very proud of him. His goal was a sign of destiny."

Fernando Santos has "no regrets" over leaving Cristiano Ronaldo on the bench despite Portugal crashing out of the World Cup with a 1-0 defeat to Morocco on Saturday.

Youssef En-Nesyri's header gave Morocco the lead in the 42nd minute, and Santos' Portugal side were unable to break through their opponent's resolute defence as they were eliminated at the quarter-final stage.

Santos left Ronaldo out of the starting XI for the 6-1 thumping of Switzerland in the round of 16, with his replacement Goncalo Ramos scoring a hat-trick.

The head coach omitted Ronaldo once again against Morocco, but this time Ramos failed to make an impact, as Portugal were dumped out despite Ronaldo's introduction shortly into the second half.

Asked if he regretted not starting Ronaldo, Santos told reporters: "No, I don't think so. I have no regrets, no regrets.

"This was a team that played very well against Switzerland. Cristiano Ronaldo is a great player, he came in when we thought it was necessary. No, I have no regret."

Ronaldo was left on the bench against Switzerland because of his negative reaction to being substituted against South Korea in Portugal's final group game.

The 37-year-old was heavily criticised after the round-of-16 match, but Santos does not feel that fan reaction had any influence on Ronaldo's limited impact against Morocco, after which the forward was shown in tears going down the tunnel.

"I do not think that the criticism he faced had any impact on the match," Santos added. "We have always been a team that is very united.

"If we take two people that were the most upset about the game, perhaps it was Cristiano and myself. We are upset of course, it affects us, but it's part of the game as a coach and a player."

Santos' contract as Portugal boss is due to expire in 2024, but it is rumoured he may resign after this World Cup exit.

Santos was asked whether he would quit as Portugal boss, to which he replied: "I have already discussed this with the president.

"Since 2014 the possibility of resignation has been discussed. This word is not part of our vocabulary.

"We did not go as far as we wanted, it's sad. Our team has great quality, we could have played better but there were games where we needed a touch of luck. That did not happen."

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