Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo will not lead the line for his country tonight in the round of 16 against potential dark horse Switzerland according to Portuguese outlet Record.
Ronaldo has scored just one goal all tournament and has not been at his best in service of his country this winter despite leading the line for A Seleçao under Fernando Santos.
The Al Nassr new-boy stormed off the pitch during the final group stage clash against South Korea which Portugal lost 2-0 but still topped the group despite the poor performance on the night, but Ronaldo’s frustrations have now appeared to boil to the surface for his country as well, with Santos making the call to remove him from his preferred XI at the start of the knockout stage.
This will open the door for one of a cadre of attacking talents to be brought into the matchday XI while a possible formation shift away from a 4-3-1-2 that Santos was previously relying on could also receive an alteration, though reports link Gonçalo Ramos with being called upon to start in a front-two alongside João Félix.
More to follow as the situation develops.