Cristiano Ronaldo came to Portugal’s rescue with two penalties to cancel out a brace from France’s Karim Benzema in an enthralling 2-2 draw that sent both sides into the Euro 2020 last 16 in a frantic conclusion to Group F on Wednesday.
An anxious night for the reigning European champions saw them occupy every position in the so-called group of death at various junctures but the 36-year-old Ronaldo, so often his country’s saviour, stepped up to reach another career milestone.
He had already become the highest-ever scorer in Euro finals with his double against Hungary in the opening game and his two spot-kick conversions — in the 31st and 60th minutes — took him to 109 international goals, level with the record number scored by Iran’s Ali Daei.
Benzema’s first was also from the spot as for the first time in European Championship history three penalties were converted in regular time.
The Frenchman, recalled by manager Didier Deschamps for the tournament after a five-year exile, equalised on the stroke of halftime with his first France goal for five years and 258 days.