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FIFA World Cup 2022: How Inaki Williams almost ruined Portugal's perfect night

FIFA World Cup 2022: Ghana was just one kick away from sharing the spoils with Cristiano Ronaldo and Co. But Williams was betrayed by his balance in the cruellest of ways

November 25, 2022 / 09:04 PM IST
FIFA World Cup 2022: Inaki Williams tragically lost his balance as he tried to kick the ball into the empty net.

FIFA World Cup 2022: Inaki Williams tragically lost his balance as he tried to kick the ball into the empty net.


Cristiano Ronaldo made history after becoming the first man to score in five FIFA World Cups as Portugal ran out 3-2 winners on Thursday evening. Ronaldo opened the scoring in the 65th minute from the penalty spot, before Ghana equalised just eight minutes later after Andre Ayew finished off a well-worked attack. But that only opened the floodgates for Portugal.

Joao Felix and Rafael Leao took advantage of Ghana's attacking ambitions, which left plenty of space at the back for Portugal to attack. Felix chipped the goalkeeper in the 78th minute after Bruno Fernandes threaded a through ball to his feet before Leao finished off a blistering counterattack, led by Fernandes again, by slotting past the Ghana keeper just two minutes later.

With the score reading 3-1, the Black Stars did not give up. Osman Bhukari made the Portuguese sweat after he headed past goalkeeper David D’Costa in the 89th minute to make it 3-2 as Ghana grew in confidence towards the end of the match.

So close, yet so far

And Ghana could have snatched a point in the dying seconds of the match had Inaki Williams kept his balance. With the referee poised to blow the full-time whistle, the goalkeeper D'Costa was looking to kill the final few seconds with the ball in his hand in the middle of the penalty box, blissfully unaware of Williams' presence behind him who was standing by the goalpost.

As D'Costa dropped the ball and prepared to kick it infield, Williams made a dash towards the ball in his quest to snatch a point for his team. Unfortunately, Williams tragically lost his balance as he tried to kick the ball into the empty net, which allowed Portugal's defenders to scramble back and take care of the situation.

Williams did regain his balance to correct his initial slip, but Ruben Dias and Danillo Pereira made it back in time to clear the situation.

As the referee blew the full-time whistle, Cristiano Ronaldo can be seen flailing his hands over his head in disbelief at what just happened a few seconds earlier.
Amrit Ramakrishnan
first published: Nov 25, 2022 09:22 am