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Nani apologises for ruining Ronaldo wonder goal
Portugal winger Nani apologised to team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo for denying the Real Madrid star a memorable goal in their side's 4-0 friendly mauling of world champions Spain.
Captain Ronaldo looked to have put Portugal ahead with a superb effort in the first half, the £80 million forward cleverly turning inside Gerard Pique before scooping his shot over Real team-mate Iker Casillas.
The effort was dropping into the net but Nani raced in from an offside position to head the ball in from point-blank range, leading to the goal being disallowed.
And while Nani was initially admant that he was onside, the Manchester United winger admitted that, on reflection, his decision to put the ball into the net was an erroneous one.
"I touched the ball because I thought I wasn't offside," Nani said. "Everything happened so quickly. After having time to think about it I apologised to Ronaldo. It was a great piece of play and I shouldn't have ruined it.''
Ronaldo, who threw his captain's armband onto the pitch in anger after the goal was disallowed, felt the ball had already crossed the line before Nani got to it.
"I don't understand, even a blind man could see it was a goal, the ball was half a metre into the net,'' Ronaldo said in Marca. "I don't know if it's a coincidence or not but my best goals with the national team are being disallowed. I remember an overhead kick in the Bessa stadium which wasn't given.''
The incident did not end up costing Portugal dear as they would go on to record an emphatic victory over their Iberian neighbours, gaining some measure of revenge for their World Cup exit in the process. Spain beat Portugal in the second round in South Africa before going on to be crowned world champions for the first time.