Cristiano Ronaldo missed a penalty – and spurned a hatful of other chances – as Portugal were frustrated at Euro 2016 yet again and held 0-0 by Austria.
The Real Madrid star, winning his record 128th Portugal cap, had already ensured he would be the centre of attention after some unflattering comments about Iceland following his side’s opening draw on Tuesday.
But he endured a night to forget at the Parc des Princes, slamming a 79th-minute penalty against the post, having an 85th-minute header disallowed and being denied on several other occasions in front of goal.
As against Iceland, Portugal completely dominated proceedings, mustering 23 shots to Austria’s three, but they were unable to find a way past Robert Almer in the Group F clash.
The game was mostly one-way traffic, although Austria passed up a glorious early opportunity when Martin Harnik headed wide in the third minute. Portugal then took charge and carved out numerous chances.
A miscued clearance by Stefan Ilsanker looped into Nani’s path but the Portugal forward was unable to put sufficient power and direction on his header. Nani created another chance himself after skipping past Sebastian Prodl but Almer blocked and then saved Vieirinha’s follow-up.
Uncertainty crept in at the back for Austria with Martin Hinteregger selling Almer short with a back-pass and having the ball blasted at him by the goalkeeper, at the cost of a corner.
Ronaldo seemed certain to score after a slick move involving Nani and Raphael Guerriero but he remarkably sidefooted wide.
Nani then headed against the post following a short corner and Joao Moutinho blasted over before Ronaldo shot at Almer.
Austria finally got some respite late in the first half and Pepe was booked for felling David Alaba just outside the area, on the right. Alaba whipped in a dangerous free-kick but Vieirinha headed away at the far post.
Austria threatened again after the restart but Rui Patricio saved well from Ilsanker’s piledriver. Ronaldo hit an even better shot at the other end but Almer was equal to it, as he was to his header from the resulting corner.
Ronaldo was out of luck again when he sent a free-kick over the bar but worse was to follow for him after he was awarded a penalty following an off-the-ball tussle with Hinteregger late on.
Ronaldo stepped up to take the spot-kick and struck it confidently, but fired it against the upright after going to Almer’s right.
He thought he had redeemed himself five minutes from time as he rose superbly to head home a free-kick but the flag was raised.
It was not his night and, after two games, Portugal surprisingly have only two points.