Roy Keane said he would be “going after” one Portugal player in the dressing room after the European Championship holders were knocked out by Belgium on Sunday night.
The former Manchester United skipper was seething after watching Portugal lose 1-0 to Belgium in Seville. And speaking after the last-16 clash Keane branded Joao Felix an “imposter”.
Thorgan Hazard’s wonderful strike before half-time proved to be the difference, with second-half substitutes Bruno Fernandes and Felix unable to get Portugal back on level terms.
And Keane was not impressed with Felix’s contribution in the 35 minutes he was on the pitch. The
Felix went from Benfica to Atletico Madrid in July 2019 for £113m, but he offered little against Belgium, bar a late scuffed shot after neat set-up play with Cristiano Ronaldo.
“Joao Felix when he came on, what did he do? The guy is an imposter,” he said on ITV Sport.
“What is he worth £100m? You have got to hit the target and if I was Ronaldo I would be going after him in the dressing room.”
“That guy's an imposter! He’s an imposter! Your country needs you. He comes on – hit the target! £100million?! If I was Ronaldo, I’d be going after him in the dressing room. Shocking!” 😡
— ITV Football (@itvfootball) June 27, 2021
Portugal coach Fernando Santos felt defeat was undeserved.
Santos said: “I think it is unfair but this is football. If you score you win – they scored, we didn’t.
“But apart form the first 10 minutes when we didn’t play that well, my players played with a strong mentality and tried to attack.
“We wanted the ball. We had 29 shots and couldn’t score one. They had six shots and one on target and they won.
“We hit the post and carried on being dangerous but the ball wouldn’t go in. We kept our heads up and kept thinking we could turn things but this is football. Sometimes we have had fewer chances and won.
“We are very disappointed. We thought we could reach the final and win – that was our attitude. Some of the lads are crying in the changing rooms but we can still win more titles and now we are looking forward to the World Cup.”
Martinez pays tribute to Belgium’s mentality
Belgium coach Roberto Martinez said: “It wasn’t just about how good we could be, it was about how we could adapt to what Portugal do the best, which is do exactly what they need to do to win.
“That is why they are the current champions and winners of Nations League. They have incredible experience and know how to take those moments to hurt you.
“We had incredible concentration and defended really well. We scored a very good goal.
“In the second half the more the momentum went to Portugal we had to show an incredible mentality. Everything was about being disciplined and tactically astute.
“We never lost concentration and there were difficult moments. The way Portugal pushed for victory until the end, this gives me incredible satisfaction.
“This is what a winning team needs. We know the talent we we have but all the other elements you need were shown today. For us it was the biggest test there is.”