Cristiano Ronaldo’s controversial World Cup penalty: ‘Total genius’, says FIFA

On Thursday (November 24), Ronaldo went down after a tackle by Ghana's Mohammed Salisu and the referee awarded a penalty.

Cristiano Ronaldo FIFA World Cup 2022
Cristiano Ronaldo exults after scoring from the penalty spot in Portugal vs Ghana FIFA World Cup 2022 game in Doha on Thursday (November 24). Photo: Twitter/FIFA

A controversial penalty won by Cristiano Ronaldo during Portugal’s win over Ghana at the ongoing World Cup 2022 in Qatar has been called a “total genius” by FIFA.

On Thursday (November 24), Ronaldo went down after a tackle by Mohammed Salisu and the referee awarded a penalty. Ronaldo converted it in the 65th minute to put the team ahead. Later, Portugal won 3-2.

Also read: FIFA World Cup 2022 format, points, tie-breaker, goal-line tech, other rules

With that goal, Ronaldo became the first male player to score at five World Cups.

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Commenting on Ronaldo’s penalty, FIFA technical study group member Sunday Oliseh said on Saturday that strikers are “getting smarter”.

Also read: FIFA World Cup 2022: All you need to know about the tournament in Qatar

“Maybe the strikers are getting smarter. If you look at the penalty Ronaldo got, let’s face it, people can say what they want about this man, but the genius thought to just be patient and put my foot to touch the ball first before you, continue my leg so that you make contact with my leg – that is total genius,” Oliseh said when asked why more penalties were awarded at the Qatar tournament when compared to previous editions.

“Let’s give the strikers the compliment for getting smarter,” the former Nigeria international player added at a press conference in Doha.

Ghana manager Otto Addo was furious at the referee’s decision to award a penalty. He called it a “gift” and “really wrong decision”.

Also read: FIFA World Cup 2022: Schedule, groups, match times in IST, venues, live TV, streaming, and more

After the loss, he told BeIN Sports, “The referee gave a penalty which was not a penalty – everyone saw that. Why? Because it’s Ronaldo or something? The referee was not in our favour.”

Portugal’s next Group H match is against Uruguay on Monday (November 28).

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