Fernando Santos explains why Ronaldo was benched vs Spain

Cristiano Ronaldo was on the bench for Portugal’s opening Nations League game vs Spain much to the surprise of everyone. Portugal drew 1-1 vs Spain but Ronaldo being on the bench was what caught the most attention.

Morata gave Spain a 1-0 lead inside the first half and Spain dominated much of the game. Cristiano Ronaldo was brought on in the second half and his arrival made impact as Portugal were able to equalize towards the end of the game.

The result means both Portugal and Spain share points but Czech Republic are top of the group as they beat Switzerland 2-1 in their opening game.

A lot of fans didn’t like Santos decision to bench Ronaldo vs Spain. Portugal boss explained his decision at the end of the game:

“Cristiano Ronaldo? They often ask why he is a starter. It’s the million-dollar question. I understood that for this game it was better to use the players I used.”

“It was a technical and tactical option for this game. It seemed to us the best solution. For the way we wanted to play and approach the game. It has nothing to do with Cristiano’s quality, that’s not even in question.”

“There are moments in the game when you have to think in a different way. We believed that in the second half he could come in and solve the game.”

Portugal play their next game on Sunday vs Switzerland at home and Cristiano Ronaldo is expected to start that game at home.

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