Cristiano Ronaldo produced a crucial performance for Portugal in their draw with Spain in their opening game of the 2018 World Cup on Friday night.
The Real Madrid superstar stepped up with a hat-trick to ensure his side claimed a share of the spoils, and so it sets up an intriguing conclusion to the group stage to determine who advances.
However, some eagle-eyed viewers noticed something during the celebrations after his sensational late free-kick as the Portugal players went to celebrate near the corner flag.
All-but one of the players in the line-up ended up off the pitch, with who appears to be Jose Fonte remaining on the pitch and watching on from a slight distance to the rest of the group.
It turns out that has probably been happening for some time, and if you’re like us, we had no idea and why!
As per the tweet below which quotes the rulebook on kick-offs, provided a player is in the opposition half, a team can’t resume the game and kick-off.
In turn, as Spain waited to get things back underway, they were unable to do so because Fonte kept his head and stayed on the pitch to avoid a scenario where Portugal could be caught out.
Now whether that is a rule that would be enforced on such a global stage is up for debate, but quick free-kicks and the like have been seen before at lower levels with other sides chasing back to get into position, but on this occasion, Spain were never given the opportunity as Ronaldo led the celebrations without one of his compatriots.
During Cristiano’s hat-trick celebration, all Portuguese players were celebrating with him except one who had to stay inside the pitch as FIFA states if all ‘outfield players’ are off the pitch during celebrations, opposing team can kickoff the game. ?? pic.twitter.com/u8ewWV3Zz6
— The Football Arena (@BantsFootballFC) June 18, 2018
— David (@p4yno) June 18, 2018